The Agreement for Canada-Prince Edward Island Cooperation on Immigration will make it easier for the province to attract and welcome newcomers and to respond to its particular social, demographic, and economic needs. Limits have been removed from the Prince Edward Island (PEI) Provincial Nominee Program (PNP), allowing the province to nominate even more of the immigrants it needs for fast-track Permanent Residency.
The agreement builds on the existing relationship between the federal and PEI governments on immigration matters, including the delivery of settlement services. It includes several new provisions to address PEI’s evolving demographic and labour market needs. Under the new agreement:
- Prince Edward Island will be able to nominate more immigrants who have the skills that are needed in the province for fast-track Permanent Residency by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).
- PEI and Canada will work together to develop and implement strategies to better integrate immigrants into the labour market. This includes improving the process of foreign credential recognition.
- Canada and PEI will enhance cooperation in overseas immigration marketing initiatives, including bringing temporary foreign workers and students to the province.
“We are very pleased to renew this immigration agreement with the federal government,” stated PEI Minister Allan Campbell. “It gives the province the authority we need to attract new immigrants who will meet gaps in our labour market and help boost our declining population.”
The agreement seeks to involve community stakeholders to ensure that the integration and settlement process is smooth once new immigrants arrive. Municipalities, service providers, and the private sector recognize the importance of properly integrating newcomers into PEI society and labour market.
Citizenship and Immigration Canada Minister Diane Finley recently announced more than $2.6 million in settlement funding to be alloted to four PEI organizations. The PEI Association for Newcomers to Canada, Holland College, Study Abroad Canada, and Carrefour d’immigration rurale Évangéline are being funded to help deliver settlement services such as job search support, language training, translation and interpretation, and resettlement assistance for refugees. The PEI Association for Newcomers to Canada runs a program to connect immigrants with volunteers who can help them establish contacts in their field of work and participate in the community. Carrefour d’immigration rurale Évangéline delivers settlement services to French-speaking newcomers.