Immigration agents will help increase Island population
The provincial government today took direct action to increase Prince Edward Island’s population by attracting more immigrants to the Island.
Government has issued a Request For Proposals for immigration agents who will work to attract immigrants – especially in rural areas of the province. Population growth is a priority for Prince Edward Island as described in its Population Action Plan and incredibly important to the province’s social and economic future.
“It is vital that we maintain or increase our rural population in order to make rural communities more vibrant and sustainable into the future,” Rural and Regional Development Minister Pat Murphy said. “Immigrants arriving through the Provincial Nominee Program represent a significant opportunity for rural areas given that they are required to open, purchase, or invest in a business, or work in areas where critical labour shortages exist.
“These new agents will be specifically tasked with making new immigrants aware of the significant opportunities in rural Prince Edward Island.”
Each of the new immigration agents will work collaboratively with the recently announced regional economic councils. The main goal of those councils is to develop strategies to drive economic and population growth across the Island. One of the focuses of these councils – which will have their first meeting later this week – will be to encourage new immigrants to purchase or invest in existing businesses and attract new immigrant entrepreneurs.
“This is a very exciting development for rural Prince Edward Island and the province as a whole,” Workforce and Advanced Learning Minister Sonny Gallant said. “A significant portion of our most critical labour gaps and business succession issues exist in rural Prince Edward Island; by putting a sharp focus on the many attractive qualities of a rural business and lifestyle, we know we can attract immigrants who will choose to live, work, study or own a business outside of our major centres.”
Through the Provincial Nominee Program:
• more than 50 newcomers have started or purchased a business outside of the Charlottetown/Cornwall/Stratford area (representing sectors including tourism accommodation, retail, food service, and fisheries);
• more than 300 newcomers have filled job vacancies in communities and municipalities outside of the Charlottetown/Cornwall/Stratford area (filling skill gaps in agriculture, fisheries, trades, manufacturing and processing, and transportation and logistics); and
• newcomers and their families from more than 100 countries are settling in more than 40 different Prince Edward Island communities and municipalities from Souris to Tignish.
Department of Economic Development and Tourism