Canada, lauded for its skill based immigration policy, is considered as a heaven by skilled workers on its point-based system. However, the skills obtained in their native countries are useless to Canadian employers.
In cities like Toronto and Vancouver, highly skilled immigrants are driving taxis or folding laundries. On inquiry, some of them said that although they are engineers or doctors, their degrees are void here. They have to obtain a similar Canadian degree to find employment.
What are the Problems for a Skill-Based Immigration Policy?
The primary hurdle in finding an appropriate job for these educated immigrants is Canada’s lack of professional contacts. In addition to that, employers seem to rely more on native educational qualifications than degrees obtained anywhere else.
Moreover, cultural differences complicate matters for most immigrants. Statistics show that employees of fairer complexion have higher success in obtaining employment. Employees with the ability to communicate using local language in an intelligible accent are also high on the preference list. Due to this misfit, the less fortunate immigrants hesitate to integrate into the native society. And so the locals form preoccupied opinions about the immigrants and become reluctant to accept them.
Consequently, we find pockets of immigrant colonies in the form of ghettos like little India, little Pakistan, Chinatown, etc. It shows the cultural indifference between the hosts and immigrants.
The developed countries proclaim that their immigration system is geared towards letting in highly skilled immigrants through their point base system. All in the name of enhancing their ‘economic’ and ‘cultural’ growth. But the underutilization of this imported talent defeats the very purpose.
Canada isn’t Alone in Depending on Immigrants
Immigrants make 13.5 percent of the US population, accounting for 43.3 million out of 321.4 million American population (2015). 27 percent of immigration groups in the United States are Mexicans, making it the largest ethnic group in the 2010s. In the 1960s, Italians were the largest ethnic group immigrating to the United States. It was after Europe suffered greatly post-World War II.
Immigration definitely has both positive and negative effects on the destination country. For example, India has suffered because of Rohingya Muslims illegally entering the country. India is the second most populated country in the world. Illegal immigrants hurt the country’s economy. If talking in terms of Canada, immigration will foster the country’s economy. Currently, Canada has a median age of 41 years old. Inviting young immigrants will make the country more productive.
Immigrants often choose unskilled jobs and are ready to do it at lower costs than the country’s citizens will do. Companies save a lot by hiring immigrants. Immigrants bring diversity to any country they go to. It helps every identify and respect rights and humanity better. Since more people are at work, industries can grow multi-fold as all processes are done faster.
A Burden on the Government
At the same time, due to immigrants, locals lose their jobs. Most immigrants have a hard time in a new country. The new society doesn’t accept them for their communication skills, language, and way of living. Locals feel immigrants are uncultured and poor.
The government has to handle more people’s health and social welfare than the policy is designed to handle, reducing the country’s wealth. Immigrants easily spread diseases as well. There is always a risk of the outbreak of contagious diseases.
However, if these immigrants are people fleeing war-torn or corrupt home countries, they should be welcomed. Every person deserves a chance for a better life.
People leave the home country to find a better life somewhere out in a foreign country. Most people from developing countries migrate to developed countries. Better salaries, a healthier lifestyle, and a secure future attracts these people. There is nothing wrong with migrating to another country. Everyone is in the race to survive.
Immigration has positive and negative effects on the home country. One of the major disadvantages every home country has to suffer from is the loss of skilled workers. People like doctors, teachers, and engineers move out to foreign nations to offer their service. The number reduces in the home country. There is greater demand than supply, increasing the costs of acquiring such services.
It is the youth that mostly leaves the country. Businesses fail because there isn’t enough youth to attract to buy services and products. The average age of the country is increasing foreign direct investments. If only a person of the family goes to a foreign country, he misses his children’s developmental milestones and a satisfying life with his wife.
The positive side of immigration
The home country’s economy increases as the foreign country’s earnings send money home to run his family. There is a massive flow of funds that boosts the economy of the local government. This helps the government in the infrastructure development of the country. There is also less competition. If a certain number of people go out of the country for work, the ones left behind have a higher chance of getting a job and good pay.
Immigrants often return to their homeland with new ideas and skills. Most of them open startups here after learning techniques from a foreign country. This again boosts the economy and generates jobs for locals. They are also able to spread new knowledge and information in the home country.
Canada Seems to be Capitalizing on U.S.’s Loss
With the Trump administration, the United States is slowly losing its popularity amongst international workers who had dreamt of making their American dreams succeed. With the added restrictions on visas and immigration policies, the US is discouraging skilled labor from entering the country. Only the future will be able to tell if they took the correct decision.
Meanwhile, Canada has gained an advantage in the global talent market because of its lovely atmosphere and immigrant-friendly policies. Indian professionals and students, especially, have already begun to focus on Canada as their ultimate destination in North America. The rush started as early as 2017, according to the data released by the Institute of International Education and the US Bureau of Cultural and Educational Affairs.
The report states that the academic year, 2016-17, saw hardly any growth in the number of enrolled Indian students in the US. There was a rise of just 1.3%. Over 500 US universities have noticed an average 7 percent decline in the enrollment of fresh students. Only 62 537 US F-1 visas were given to Indians in 2016, and that marked a fall of 16.4%.
On the other hand, almost 1,00,000 Indian students were studying in Canada during this time. More than 50,000 new Indian students got their Student Visas in 2016 and headed there. By October 2017, Canada saw 54 425 more fresh Indian faces.
Canada is a much cheaper option for Indian students as compared to the US, and that is playing a major role in its growing reach. Even the top colleges in Canada are more affordable than an average American college. Firms in Canada are enticing Indian students and professionals who are studying in Canada. The simple Express Entry process and the Canada Experience Class introduction have also made immigration much easier.