Making Canada’s Immigration System Work

February 27, 2021

Ottawa Journal (March 04 – March 08, 2021)

Canada is a country that prides itself on being able to attract the very best and brightest newcomers. However, in the past, our immigration system wasn’t working as well as it could have. Skilled workers looking to immigrate here were being left in the dark over whether or not their foreign credentials would be recognized here in Canada.

One of the ways we helped resolve this issue was through the Canadian Immigrant Integration Program (CIIP). The CIIP helps newcomers prepare for economic success before arriving here in Canada by providing the information they need regarding credential recognition and the labour market as a whole.

When discussing the goal of the CIIP, Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration, and Multiculturalism stated, “We want newcomers to be able to hit the ground running as soon as they arrive.” The CIIP contributes to this by giving newcomers the tools they need to succeed.

The 20,000 people who have graduated from the CIIP agree. A recent evaluation found that 91 per cent of participants strongly agreed that CIIP services were useful and 99 per cent agreed that the services had improved their understanding of how to find suitable work in Canada.

This program benefits all Canadians. Not only will we be able to make our immigration system more efficient, but it will also help ensure newcomers are able to contribute to our economy sooner and in a more meaningful way.

Our Government has made it our goal to build a fast and flexible economic immigration system that meets the needs of our labour market. Through measures like the CIIP, we are proud to say that we are delivering on that goal.

When we first took office in 2006, we inherited an immigration system that didn’t work for Canada. Under previous governments, applications for Skilled Workers were taking five years to process and the backlog was approaching half a million people. However, since 2006 we’ve been able to shorten the application time to just one year and the applicants backlog has been reduced by over 150,000 people. This means that fewer worthy applicants are being turned away and more new Canadians are being given the opportunity to strengthen our economy.

We also passed measures that cut the Right of Landing Fee in half and made it easier for families to immigrate as a whole. Going forward, we intend to build on that legacy.

In my role as Chairman of the Standing Committee on Citizenship, Immigration, and Multiculturalism, I have worked with Committee members in studying these and many other important immigration and citizenship issues facing Canada today.

Canada is a country that welcomes determination, hard-work, resourcefulness, and an entrepreneurial spirit. The CIIP is helping ensure that those who embody these values make Canada their destination of choice.