Premiers Committed to Enhancing Skills Development and Immigration

Immigration and Labour Market
Canada’s economic prosperity relies on a skilled, flexible, innovative and inclusive workforce. This includes: an ability to grow our working age population; engaging Indigenous peoples; attracting and retaining immigrants to support the vibrancy of our communities, and supplement and enhance a skilled labour force; assisting seasonal and precariously employed workers; and, fostering entrepreneurship.

All forms of immigration play a critical role in building an inclusive, diverse and prosperous society. It is imperative that the economic and social benefits of immigration, including Francophone immigration, are spread widely among Canadian communities. Premiers reiterated the importance of Provincial and Territorial Nominee Programs and that provinces and territories are best placed to determine the most appropriate nominee selection criteria based on jurisdictional needs and priorities. Premiers called on the federal government to ensure timely and efficient processing of provincially and territorially nominated economic immigrants. Premiers emphasized the importance of economic immigration to help meet labour market needs and called on the federal government to achieve a minimum target of 65% of annual admissions for economic immigrants (including skilled workers, business people and entrepreneurs).

Premiers emphasized the importance of policies that prioritize hiring Canadian citizens and permanent residents, and also discussed the need for flexibility in the Temporary Foreign Worker Program to meet the needs of small and medium sized enterprises who can demonstrate difficulty in finding Canadian workers.

Under the Canada-Québec Accord relating to immigration and temporary admission of immigrants, Québec fully assumes sole responsibility for establishing immigration levels, and for the selection, francization and integration of immigrants. In areas under its responsibility, Québec develops its policies and programs, legislates, regulates and sets its own standards.

Premiers discussed the increased number of individuals crossing the border outside of regular ports of entry, and how this has put pressure on shelters, housing, education, health care, language training and other support services in impacted jurisdictions.

Premiers call on the federal government to provide full compensation to affected provinces for the costs incurred. They also urged the federal government to make the necessary investments to ensure the timely adjudication of refugee claimant hearings and expedited processing of all immigration applications into Canada.

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Media enquiries may be directed to:

Jim Billington
Director of Communications and Press Secretary Office of the Premier
Government of Saskatchewan
(306) 787-0425