Saskatchewan Looks To Ireland To Fill Its labour Shortage

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A CANADIAN PROVINCE is hoping to benefit from the number of talented people out of work in Ireland as it suffers from a dearth of skilled workers.A delegation of recruiters from Saskatchewan is travelling to Ireland next month to launch a campaign to address the province’s labour shortage.

The 27 employers hope to fill more than 275 jobs while in Dublin on 3-4 March and in Cork on 7 March.

Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall and Minister of Advanced Education, Employment and Immigration Rob Norris will accompany the recruiting companies on their mission to Ireland.

Located right in the middle of Canada, Saskatchewan is the country’s fastest growing province. It currently boasts record high employment and above-average earnings. The province, including its two major cities Saskatoon and Regina, has just 1.2 per cent of its population receiving unemployment benefits.

Over the next five years, between 75,000 and 90,000 skilled workers will be needed to plug the labour shortage. Recruitment will mainly be in areas of advanced technology, construction, mineral exploration, agriculture and petroleum.

Permanent residency for Irish workers is being fast-tracked by the Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Programme.

Such programmes are becoming more common across countries such as Canada, Australia and New Zealand who are not meeting labour market demands. They have honed in on English-speaking countries, such as Ireland, who are suffering from a scarcity of jobs and a surplus of workers.

Of the 275 jobs on offer next month, about 100 are for skilled positions in the construction sector.

“There is a good match between the jobs we have and the Irish people looking to emigrate, especially those with construction backgrounds,” says Michael Fougere, the president of the Construction Association.

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