An agreement signed between the Canadian federal government and Alberta will allow the province to attract ten times the current number of immigrants over the next ten years.
The number of immigrants currently allotted to the province is set at 2,500, but it will be raised to 25,000 over the next decade. This is expected to constitute 10% of all immigration to Canada.
Included in the agreement are plans to cut red tape to fast-track badly needed workers. Alberta will be in control of how this would be done.
<$adv0> "This agreement fulfils my commitment to pursue a 'made-in-Alberta' immigration solution," said Alberta Premier Edward Stelmach.
Under the new agreement, Alberta will be able to nominate more immigrants who have the skills needed in the province, and those nominations will be fast-tracked by the federal government. The authority for a provincal government to nominate potential immigrants is similar to a program in place in Australia.
There will also be a new project to aid the entry of certain foreign health-care professionals applying for entry to Alberta. Increased marketing initiatives are also on the books.
"Taken together, the agreement and the related initiatives speak to the strength and flexibility of our relationship," said Immigration Minister Diane Finley. "I look forward to continued progress as we build and expand our partnerships for the benefit of newcomers and Albertans alike."
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