Nova Scotia launches new immigration strategy

Program includes additional funding, target of 70 per-cent retention

Nova Scotia is hoping to fulfill the province's commitment to double the number of new immigrants arriving each year by 2020, with a target of 7,200.

The province has launched Welcome Home to Nova Scotia, a strategy that will be supported by $790,000 in additional funding for immigration efforts and target a 70 per cent retention rate.

"Welcome Home to Nova Scotia is the province's most ambitious and focused immigration plan ever and one of the most comprehensive strategies in the country," said Premier Darrell Dexter. "It will compliment jobsHere by targeting international workers with the technical skills and international contacts the province needs to become more innovative, productive and competitive. It will ensure potential immigrants understand they are welcome and valued in Nova Scotia and that this province wants them to stay and build a life here."

The strategy will see government working more closely with employers, community organizations and labour to ensure the province attracts immigrants whose skills are most needed in the workforce, according to Immigration Minister Marilyn More.

"By focusing on attracting immigrants with the right skills and experience, this new strategy will make our immigration programs more responsive to employers' needs," she said. "Equally important, it will mean that new immigrants will be more likely to succeed and stay in Nova Scotia, strengthening both our economy and our communities."

The new strategy will also:

• provide critical employment information about credential recognition and settlement information, to help immigrants plan for working and living in Nova Scotia before they arrive

• improve settlement programs such as extending immigrant navigator services to all regions of the province

• ensure easier and quicker recruiting of temporary foreign workers for employers

• provide more protections for temporary foreign workers and enhance programs that encourage them to make Nova Scotia their permanent home

• allow for strategic marketing to attract immigrants from around the world and international graduates already here in Canada

• establish a formal and ongoing evaluation of the nominee program to ensure accountability for immigrants, employers and taxpayers.

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