Canadian employers pay hundreds of thousands of worldwide workers every year through more than 100 different work permit pathways. With the irregularity of 2020, these amounts have only been going up since 2015 and there are no hints of halting.
Canada is encountering a huge number of job vacancies and a reasonably low unemployment ratio, which implies there are additional jobs open than there are skilled workers to fill them. As per the Statistics Canada, for every 100 positions in December, employers were seeking to fill an average of 5.2 vacancies, up from 3 in the fourth quarter of 2019. This boost in openings occurred alongside the fall of Canada’s unemployment ratio, which was 5.4% in December 2021, the lowest since December 2019 when it was 5.2%.
There are two main work permit programs: the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP), and the International Mobility Program (IMP).
The major difference between the two is that the TFWP compels employers to get an LMIA, whereas IMP work permits are LMIA-exempt.
The TFWP is intended to address labour scarcities in Canada. Employers must finish off the LMIA procedure to illustrate to Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) that the hiring of a foreign laborer is due to the scarcity of eligible workers. ESDC examines the LMIA to ascertain that hiring a foreign worker will have no adverse effect on the Canadian labour market. Once the employer obtains the favorable or impartial LMIA, they furnish a copy to the foreign worker so they can fulfill it along with their work permit request to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). The employee can then begin working once their work permit application is authorized.
By contrast, the IMP prevails to support Canada’s wide social, cultural and economic goals, so there is no desire for a labour market experiment. There are several IMP work licenses that are an outcome of Canada’s unrestricted trade agreements. For example, the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA, previously recognized as NAFTA) is a well-known unrestricted trade agreement that enables U.S. and Mexican citizens to work in Canada without an LMIA. Youth from around the world are eligible to work in Canada under the IMP due to youth mobility pacts between Canada and distinct other countries.
Canada also enables international student graduates and capable spouses and common-law partners to obtain open work licenses under the IMP. Open work permits allow employees to receive any job offer in Canada irrespective of employer or job. All open work licenses fall under the IMP, so employers do not require an LMIA to employ these laborers.