Sustaining and building a strong labour force, boosting economic growth and spurring innovation, are just three of the reasons why the Government of Canada has been increasingly immigrant-friendly. In fact, Canada wants to augment its immigrant population by one million and has set a 2021 target for achieving this goal.
This anti-restrictive immigrant approach has caught the attention of several governments across the world, particularly the APNU+AFC Government.
During an interview with the Guyana Standard today, Minister of Citizenship, Winston Felix said that Canada’s approach is being carefully considered principally for its implications on Guyana’s human resources.
Minister Felix said, “Canada has been at different times, opening up its visa programme to attract immigrants and I can tell you I have people in Canada on a visa programme, one called self sponsorship. Once you have certain qualifications, they take you…It is very possible that some of our skills can be taken away like that.”
The official added, “We have to protect our investments in education and training. We can’t be giving free education and training and people are running to other territories…”
In addition to the brain drain implications, Felix said that the government is also considering if a similar approach can be taken here for the oil sector which has a dearth of technical skills.
The Minister concluded, “These are all issues being addressed right now and I am sure that at the end of the year, we would have a solution…At an appropriate time, a policy would be developed.”