Canada is set to launch its “Express of Interest System” to let employers pick skilled immigrants from a pool of pre-screened candidates.
By Nicholas Keung, The Toronto Star
In tabling his annual report to the Parliament Monday, Immigration Minister Chris Alexander also announced that Ottawa will admit between 240,000 and 265,000 permanent residents to Canada in 2014, the same level as this year.
“While Canadians will continue to get the first crack at available jobs, getting the right people in the right places is key to addressing regional labour needs and fuelling Canada’s long-term prosperity,” Alexander said in Ottawa.
The EOI system is to start on Jan. 1, 2015.
While economic immigrants — those selected for their occupational skills, entrepreneurship and investment — will account for 63 per cent of the admissions, 26.1 per cent or 68,000 spots will be allotted to the family class. The remaining 10.9 per cent or 28,400 spaces will be for refugees and others with humanitarian needs.
Admission quotas for individual programs will be available in the coming days, but Alexander said the government will expand the targets for the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) and the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP).
About 15,000 permanent residents — up from 10,000 in 2013 — are expected under the CEC program, which allows those with at least one year of work experience in Canada to apply.
The PNP program, which lets provincial governments and employers recommend fitting candidates, is expected to draw as many as 47,000 permanent residents in 2014, up from 41,000 people.
When asked about the continuous growth of the temporary foreign workers program in 2013, Alexander said he has introduced language requirements and user fees to deter employers’ abuse of the system.
“We still need them (foreign workers) in certain circumstances, but only after we have exhausted the potential of the Canadian labour market and the potential of our economic immigration program to meet the needs,” Alexander said.