Just in time for Alberta’s next overseas recruitment mission, the federal government has announced that it will increase the number of working holiday visas granted to Irish citizens in 2014.
Alberta employers and governments have made several such trips out to Ireland and the United Kingdom in recent years specifically to recruit much needed labourers – many of whom have been hit hard in the recent global recession.
Meanwhile in Canada, the Western Prairie provinces continue to grapple with labour shortages, despite the economic slowdown. By allotting 10,700 working holiday visas to Ireland alone – up from last year’s 6,500 – the federal government is signalling strong support for these Alberta-led recruitment missions.
Next month’s delegation, organized by Calgary Economic Development, will include representatives from six different companies, mostly from the energy and construction sectors.
“In Calgary really, demand for workers exceeds supply. The unemployment rates over there are 13.9 per cent in Dublin and Manchester 7.2 per cent where supply of workers exceeds demand,” said Calgary Economic Development’s Jeanette Sutherland. “If we don’t get some of those skills in, in time we really run risk of losing projects to international competitors. One of the employers that went to Ireland two years ago mentioned that by hiring 10 Irish workers with the skills that we needed it allowed them to hire 30 locally and allowed them to compete on some of these international projects.”
The overseas trip will take place at the end of March. Working holiday visas are specifically for applicants aged 19 to 35, looking to work in Canada for up to two years. Recent amendments to the Canadian Experience Class also announced this month will help to make it easier for young workers from Ireland to gain the experience needed to qualify for immigration.
Source: Calgary Herald