The executive director of the Employers’ Council in Newfoundland and Labrador has said that the Canadian province is reliant on temporary skilled foreign workers to fill job shortages there.
Speaking on local radio station VOCM yesterday, Richard Alexander said that the province simply doesn’t have enough local workers to fill demand, and that the economic future of Newfoundland and Labrador relies on temporary workers coming in from abroad.
Alexander said that the province’s booming economy and high demand for skilled labourers, combined with an ageing population, means that immigration is going to be key to Newfoundland and Labrador’s ability to compete in the global marketplace in the future. He also stated that certain skill sets don’t exist in the province.
While the province’s economy may be booming at the moment (a report issued by the Conference Board of Canada in June stated that Newfoundland and Labrador is expected to be the runaway leader in economic growth among all provinces this year and into 2014) Alexander revealed that future planning is required if the province isn’t to “squander its current wealth”.
Newfoundland and Labrador operates a Provincial Nominee Programme which seeks to attract skilled immigrants in specialised occupations, entrepreneurs and international graduates.
In 2012, a total of 731 immigrants settled in the province – the highest number in well over a decade. More than half of these newcomers settled in St. John’s – the province’s capital and largest city, and the oldest English-founded city in North America.