The investment allows Ontario to attract the skilled immigrants needed to fill labour gaps
The Ontario government is investing an additional $15.1 million over three years to improve and expand the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP). The investment builds on the recently launched entrepreneurship pilot to attract 100 international entrepreneurs to establish businesses outside the Greater Toronto Area and allow Ontario to attract the skilled immigrants needed to fill labour gaps when local workers are unavailable.
There are currently more than 300,000 unfulfilled jobs in Ontario, and the new investment will allow the OINP to enhance security, detect fraud and make relevant IT updates to ensure the system can handle increased capacity now and in the future.
The OINP allows the province to nominate, for permanent residence, individuals with the skills and experience to contribute to Ontario’s economy. Selected individuals can apply to the federal government for permanent residency.
Through the Entrepreneur Stream of the OINP, Ontario aims to create more local jobs in various sectors, including information technology, life sciences, and tourism, while bringing new investments to cities and towns often overlooked by entrepreneurs.
While almost 120,000 economic class immigrants to Canada arrived in 2021, only 9,000 newcomers were nominated through the OINP. Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development, says an increased nomination allocation would allow Ontario to fill targeted labour market gaps in health care, computer programming, web development and trucking and drive overall economic growth.
“Newcomers are crucial to growing our economy and building a stronger future for us,” said McNaughton. “We’re lowering the barriers they face and have called on our partners in the federal government to double the number of newcomers Ontario can select in 2022. By investing in the future success of this program, we’re not resting until everyone in Ontario who wants to earn a paycheque is able to do so.”
Ontario is also removing discriminatory barriers that prevent foreign-trained professionals from working in the sectors they were trained in, such as engineering, law, accounting and skilled trades.