The Government of Canada has been improving its efforts to attract Francophone immigrants to communities outside Quebec. These efforts were primarily aimed to take action on the declining Francophone communities across the country. It is important to ensure their survival and prevent the trend that is threatening Canada’s linguistic duality, composed of both French and English speakers.
Quebec is considered an immigration destination for French-speaking foreign nationals. It is the only province in Canada where French is an official language. It is estimated that 80% of people in Quebec speak French as their first language. The Francophone community in Canada extends far beyond Quebec’s borders to the various communities across the country. To promote these communities’ sustainability and vitality, the Acadian and Francophone associations are working together to encourage, recruit, and welcome Francophone newcomers.
Recently, Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) commenced providing Francophone and bilingual applicants with the requirements in the Express Entry system.
A quick glimpse about Francophone immigration outside Quebec in 2020
Most of the previous efforts resulted in an increase in the number of Francophone newcomer settlers across Canada. However, recently, most of the provinces noticed a decline in the number of permanent Francophone residents in 2020.
Alberta, for instance, recorded 465 new Francophone residents in 2020, which is lesser compared to 600 in the previous year. There is also a 25% decline in New Brunswick and a 35% drop in Ontario.
Speaking French can be an asset when immigrating to Quebec and other Canadian provinces
Yes, you read it right. It is true not only when acquiring a work permit, but also when seeking permanent immigration in Canada.
Canada launched Mobilité Francophone, a work permit option known as the latest addition to the International Mobility Program (IMP). The stream makes the process faster when hiring bilingual or French-speaking foreign workers in professional, management, professional, or skilled trade positions. It also aids Canadian employers to skip the process on the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), which is a requirement when hiring foreign professionals.
Francophones receive further points when it comes to permanent residency. This is under the country’s main skilled worker immigrant selection process, known as Express Entry. The Canadian Experience Class and the Federal Skilled Trades Program are designed to pick the applicants who meet the Federal Skilled Worker Program’s criteria. This system recognizes the award points and French language skills for French language proficiency. To understand it better, when two applicants both have similar academic backgrounds and work experience, the one who is proficient in speaking French will get a better chance of getting the job.
Canada also has a successful Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) to implement its own immigration guidelines and streams to recruit French speakers. Express Entry candidates who have advanced to intermediate French can get an Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP).
In addition, Nova Scotia encourages French-speaking applicants through its Labour Market Priorities Stream.
Provincial Nominee Program allows the candidates to present test results to confirm their French ability for PNP streams. This is because French language skills are treated no less significantly than English language skills.
You might be asking: what is the best way to immigrate to Canada as a Francophone? It will depend on your goals. If your purpose is to study, various reputable institutions in the country provide top-notch French or bilingual education programs for university and college levels. If you want to get a job, a work permit route will help you. Once you’re in Canada, you can start exploring the options for permanent immigration.
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