With the recent pronouncement of Mayor Donald J. Atchison of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan about Filipino workers being favoured by Canadian employers because of their positive traits, another opportunity may open up for qualified Filipinos seeking overseas jobs as Saskatchewan province issued a new standard for skilled labor migration.

Labor Attaché Leonida V. Romulo of the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in Toronto, reported to Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz that the provincial government in Saskatchewan has come up with a new policy for addressing the skilled labor shortage in the area.

The policy gives preference to skilled personnel from other countries desirous of immigrating to Canada over other applicants lined up in the immigration applications.

According to Labor Attach Romulo, the Saskatchewan Express Entry stream enables the province to nominate individuals who are in Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s Express Entry pool and who have the education, skilled work experience, language ability and other factors to help them settle successfully and integrate into Saskatchewan’s labour market and communities.

Express Entry is the new selection system for Canadian immigration designed to select skilled workers for immigration to Canada.

As candidates are selected by the province from the Federal Express Entry pool, all candidates must be eligible for one of the federal economic immigration programs, namely, Federal Skilled Worker Program, Federal Skilled Trades Program, and Canadian Experience Class.

Federal Skilled Worker and Federal Skilled Trades Program applications are assessed based on an applicant’s ability to become economically established upon immigration to Canada.  The Canadian Experience Class (CEC), on the other hand, is an immigration category for Canada’s temporary foreign workers who wish to become Permanent Residents. Temporary foreign workers are ideal candidates for Canadian immigration (Permanent Residency). Having obtained Canadian work experience, these individuals have already settled into Canadian society and have established important networks in their communities and their careers.

In addition, candidates must score at least 60 points on the Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program (SINP) point assessment grid. Points are awarded on the basis of five factors, which are, education and training, skilled work experience, language ability, age, and connections to the Saskatchewan labour market.

The candidates must also demonstrate proficiency in an official language of Canada, either English or French, in order to enter the Federal Express Entry pool.

Language ability is determined by the candidate passing a standardised language test, the most common of which are the IELTS or CELPIP for English and TEF for French; and have completed a minimum of one year of post-secondary education, or training, that has resulted in a degree, diploma, certificate, or a certificate equivalent to a trade certificate and which is comparable to the Canadian education system, as verified by an Educational Credential Assessment.

A potential candidate must also demonstrate a minimum level of work experience related to his or her field of education or training.

SINP will increase the number of skilled workers immigrating to Saskatchewan by giving them preference over other applicants. The report adds that “the Canadian Labor Ministry is looking forward to addressing the shortage in management jobs and technical professions.”

Professionals such as mechanical engineers and machinists will find it easier to find employment in Canada. Saskatchewan, according to the information sent by POLO Toronto, has an aging population that has created this shortage of qualified personnel in the province.

According to International Immigration and Business Consulting web portal, Saskatchewan’s quality of life high, while the cost of living is low. Its healthcare program is a pioneer in hospital care insurance and a leader in comprehensive medical coverage. Housing costs are lower in Saskatchewan than in most major cities in Canada, and owning a home is affordable and achievable for most people. Unlike other Canadian provinces, there are no personal premiums or personal charges for basic and needed health services in Saskatchewan.

The key economic sectors in Saskatchewan are agriculture, energy, forestry, life sciences and biomass, manufacturing, and minerals.