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Saskatchewan to Expand Options for Employers Recruiting International Workers

Released on November 1, 2023

Expansion Will Provide Internationally Trained Workers In Intermediate- And Lower-Skilled Jobs The Ability To Apply For Permanent Residency

To better support worker retention in Saskatchewan's labour market, the Government of Saskatchewan is expanding the options under the Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program (SINP). The Existing Work Permit stream will now be available to certain work permit holders working in Saskatchewan in intermediate and lower-skilled occupations to apply for permanent residency.

"Through this expansion, our government is improving worker retention and directly addressing labour market gaps that Saskatchewan employers currently face," Martensville-Warman MLA Terry Jenson said on behalf of Immigration and Career Training Minister Jeremy Harrison. "Creating more permanent residency opportunities for displaced Ukrainians and other international workers, is just another way our government is further supporting Saskatchewan's businesses and economy."

Previously, only newcomers in high-skilled occupations and designated trades were eligible for the Existing Work Permit stream. With this skill expansion to include lower- and intermediate-skilled sectors, newly eligible workers can now pursue permanent residency provided they have worked in Saskatchewan and meet the remaining program criteria, which includes meeting language requirements and having a permanent, full-time job offer.

Permit holders can now apply in an additional 279 occupations, including farm labourers, truck drivers, retail sales, nurse aides and equipment operators.

To apply under the new expanded stream, applicants must have an eligible work permit, a Labour Market Impact Assessment-Supported Work Permit, or a Francophone mobility work permit, or, for recently arrived Ukrainians, a Canadian Ukrainian Authorization for Emergency Travel visa.

"The expansion of options for newcomers in today's announcement is very welcome," Ukrainian Canadian Congress of Saskatchewan President Elena Krueger said. "The Ukrainian Canadian Congress of Saskatchewan is grateful to the Government of Saskatchewan for providing refuge and support to displaced Ukrainians arriving to our province. Thank you as well to the many Saskatchewan employers who have welcomed Ukrainian newcomers into their workplaces by providing training and employment opportunities. We look forward to continuing our work with the provincial government to enhance opportunities and supports for displaced Ukrainians seeking to build their lives in safety here in Saskatchewan." 

"There is no single answer for the labour shortage, now and into the future," Saskatoon Fire and Flood Partner Brennen Mills said. "The expansion to the SINP program is a good first step, as it enables us to support our employees in the immigration process, while also helping us fill vital positions."

The Government of Saskatchewan recently successfully negotiated increases to the annual allocation of provincial immigration nominees for 2023, 2024 and 2025. Saskatchewan continues to advocate and negotiate with the federal government for additional authority to develop and implement made-in-Saskatchewan immigration policies. 

Immigration plays a vital role in supporting Saskatchewan's growing economy and labour demands. The province currently has more than 16,000 job vacancies posted on SaskJobs and National Job Bank. A total of 112,260 job openings are forecasted in Saskatchewan over the next five years.


For more information, contact:

Nipun Taneja
Immigration and Career Training
Phone: 306-510-2786

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