ARCHIVED – Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Agreement on Provincial Nominees 2006

Table of Contents


BETWEEN:

The Government of Canada, as represented by the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration (hereinafter referred to as “Canada”)

Of the First Part

and

The Government of the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador, as represented by the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, the Minister Responsible for Francophone Affairs and the Minister of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development (hereinafter called “Newfoundland and Labrador”)

Of the Second Part

1.0 PREAMBLE

1.1 Section 95 of the Constitution Act, 1867 recognizes the concurrent powers of legislation of the federal and provincial governments in immigration matters;

1.2 Both parties recognize that Newfoundland and Labrador has particular needs and circumstances, and that Newfoundland and Labrador is best positioned to determine the specific needs of the province vis-à-vis immigration. Both parties further agree that these needs can be accommodated insofar as they are not incompatible with national immigration policy;

1.3 Both parties recognize the importance of encouraging the development of francophone minority communities in Newfoundland and Labrador;

1.4 Section 8 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act authorizes the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, with the approval of the Governor in Council, to enter into an agreement with any province or group of provinces for the purpose of facilitating the formulation, coordination and implementation of immigration policies and programs;

1.5 Section 7(2) of the Intergovernmental Affairs Act authorizes the Minister for Intergovernmental Affairs, the Minister responsible for Francophone Affairs and the Minister of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development, subject to the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council, to enter into agreements with the government of Canada;

1.6 Both parties intend to enter into an agreement pursuant to section 87 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act regulations governing the appointment of Provincial Nominees; and

1.7 This agreement replaces the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Agreement on Provincial Nominees which was entered into on September 1, 1999 and subsequently extended until December 31, 2006.

2.0 DEFINITIONS

2.1 For the purposes of this Agreement:

  1. except where otherwise provided in this agreement, words used in the agreement which are defined in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, R.S.C.  2002, as amended or in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act Regulations, have the same meaning as in that Act or those Regulations; and
  2. a reference to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act or the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations is a reference to the Act or those Regulations as amended from time to time.

3.0 PURPOSE AND OBJECTIVES

3.1 The objective of the agreement is to define the roles and responsibilities of Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador in relation to the operation of Newfoundland and Labrador’s Provincial Nominee Program.

3.2 This agreement provides Newfoundland and Labrador with a mechanism to increase the economic benefits of immigration to Newfoundland and Labrador, based on economic priorities and labour market conditions including regional development and gender equity, by permitting Newfoundland and Labrador to nominate Provincial Nominees. Newfoundland and Labrador will also take into account the importance of encouraging the development of francophone communities in Newfoundland and Labrador. Newfoundland and Labrador will also take into account the importance of encouraging gender equity.

3.3 This agreement permits the processing and admission to Canada of candidates nominated by Newfoundland and Labrador for permanent residence as expeditiously as possible, taking into account statutory requirements, operational and resource constraints, Canada’s immigration projections and Newfoundland and Labrador’s provincial nominee activity plan, and service standards as developed.

4.0 PROMOTION AND RECRUITMENT

4.1 Newfoundland and Labrador and Canada agree to cooperate in the promotion and recruitment of Provincial Nominees.

4.2 Newfoundland and Labrador will undertake targeted active recruitment initiatives designed to implement its Nomination Plan including:

  1. participation at trade fairs and other targeted missions as resources permit; development of promotional materials describing the nature and quality of life in Newfoundland and Labrador. These promotional materials and programs will be gender positive in depicting women, especially in occupations and roles in which they are under-represented: ie. leadership, trades, engineering and technology.
  2. provision of information on a Newfoundland and Labrador-maintained website to prospective immigrants who intend to reside and work in Newfoundland and Labrador;
  3. preparation of information for staff working in Canadian missions abroad;
  4. consultation with representatives of French language communities in Newfoundland and Labrador;
  5. consultation with regional and community representatives; and
  6. targeted promotion to temporary residents present in Newfoundland and Labrador (international students, temporary workers and visitors).

4.3 Canada agrees to make all reasonable efforts to assist Newfoundland and Labrador to identify prospective immigrants to fulfill Newfoundland and Labrador’s targets in its immigration strategy (subject to Mission-specific limitations) including:

  1. directing potential applicants in permanent and temporary streams through Canada’s immigration-related websites to visit the Newfoundland and Labrador website;
  2. distributing promotional materials provided by Newfoundland and Labrador when displaying promotional materials at selected missions abroad;
  3. participating in provincially initiated missions to attract immigrants within the limits of mission resources;
  4. inviting Newfoundland and Labrador to participate in appropriate training or information sharing exercises with program managers and other mission staff to communicate the province’s specific needs and opportunities;
  5. inviting Newfoundland and Labrador to participate in national initiatives which provide opportunities to identify and recruit immigrants; and
  6. sharing mission expertise and source country labour market and demographic information in advance of overseas recruitment initiatives

4.4 Canada recognizes that Newfoundland and Labrador may undertake its own promotion and recruitment activities consistent with the intent of this Agreement.

4.5 Newfoundland and Labrador may enter into partnership with other parties for the purposes of promotion and recruitment and in so doing will:

  1. require third parties to respect the terms and conditions of this Agreement; and
  2. advise Canada of such partnerships.

5.0 ASSESSMENT AND NOMINATION

5.1 Newfoundland and Labrador has the sole and non-transferable responsibility to assess and nominate candidates who, in Newfoundland and Labrador’s determination:

  1. will be of benefit to the economic development of Newfoundland and Labrador; and
  2. have a strong likelihood of becoming economically established in Newfoundland and Labrador.

5.2 Provincial Nominee applicants may be nominated on the basis of economic benefit to Newfoundland and Labrador, including long-term regional growth and community development. An applicant may also be nominated on the basis of improving the status of women in Newfoundland and Labrador.

5.3 In exercising its nomination authority under this Agreement, Newfoundland and Labrador will follow the procedures and criteria for nomination established by Newfoundland and Labrador, as amended from time to time. Newfoundland and Labrador will share its criteria with Canada and keep written records of its assessments of its nominees against those criteria.

5.4 Newfoundland and Labrador will develop an annual provincial nominee plan based on principles established by Newfoundland and Labrador, and will share this plan with Canada.

5.5 Newfoundland and Labrador’s annual provincial nominee plan will be submitted to Canada in a timely manner to allow for levels planning for the following year. Canada undertakes to incorporate Newfoundland and Labrador’s Provincial Nominee objectives into the operational targets set for visa offices. The targets, which will be agreed to by both parties, may be exceeded at any time during the year, upon agreement by both parties.

5.6 Newfoundland and Labrador will issue a dated nomination certificate, valid in accordance with Newfoundland and Labrador’s administrative requirements for each provincial nominee. For security reasons, Newfoundland and Labrador will forward a copy of the certificate to the mission where the candidate will apply for admission. A nomination certificate received directly from the candidate or other parties will not be accepted as evidence pursuant to section 5.8 and 5.9.

5.7 Canada agrees to process applicants nominated for Permanent Resident status by Newfoundland and Labrador as expeditiously as possible with a view to achieving targets that have been integrated into Canada’s annual delivery plan.

5.8 Upon receipt of the Certificate of Nomination from Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada will:

  1. exercise the final selection;
  2. determine the admissibility of the nominee and his or her dependants with respect to legislative requirements including health, criminality and security; and
  3. issue immigrant visas to provincial nominees and accompanying dependants who meet all the admissibility requirements of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Regulations and of this Annex.

5.9 Canada will consider a nomination certificate issued by Newfoundland and Labrador as a determination that admission is of benefit to the economic development of Newfoundland and Labrador and that Newfoundland and Labrador has conducted due diligence to ensure that the applicant has the ability and is likely to become economically established in Newfoundland and Labrador.

5.10 Processing of applications and issuance of visas may continue beyond the calendar year in which the nomination certificate was issued.

5.11 Should Canada determine that an individual nominated by Newfoundland and Labrador is likely to be refused an immigrant visa, Newfoundland and Labrador will be notified immediately and consulted regarding the reasons for possible refusal.

5.12 Newfoundland and Labrador may raise concerns or seek clarification from the assessing officer at the relevant mission with respect to a potential refusal, within 90 days from the date of being advised by Canada. Further representation, if necessary, may be made to the program manager at the mission within the 90-day period.

5.13 Where Canada determines that it will refuse to issue an immigrant visa, Canada will advise Newfoundland and Labrador before final decision.

5.14 Where an individual nominated by Newfoundland and Labrador has received a job offer from a Newfoundland and Labrador-based employer, the responsible Canadian Visa Officer may issue a temporary work permit pursuant to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations, if the work permit application includes a letter from Newfoundland and Labrador that:

  1. states that the nominated individual is urgently required by the employer; and
  2. determines that:
    1. the job offer is genuine and would create economic, social or cultural benefits or opportunities;
    2. the employment is not part-time or seasonal; and
    3. the wages and working conditions of the employment would be sufficient to attract and retain Canadian citizens, and
  3. requests the Visa Officer to issue a temporary work permit.

5.15 Newfoundland and Labrador will not issue a nomination certificate to anyone whose employment will affect the settlement of any labour dispute or affect the employment of a person involved in such a dispute, or where their employment will adversely affect employment or training opportunities for Canadian citizens or permanent residents in Newfoundland and Labrador.

6.0 TEMPORARY ADMISSION TO FACILITATE PROMOTION AND RECRUITMENT

6.1 Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador may develop partnerships or projects that may include information sharing, facilitating exploratory visits, promotion and recruitment and support for regionalization.

6.2 Canada recognizes the legitimate requirement for exploratory visits by potential immigrants to Newfoundland and Labrador when issuing temporary resident visas, taking into account that all of Canada’s statutory obligations must be met.

7.0 PROGRAM EVALUATION AND INFORMATION EXCHANGE

7.1 Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador recognize the importance of evaluating the Provincial Nominee Program in order to determine its impacts and outcomes in Newfoundland and Labrador. Accordingly, immediately following the date of the signing of this Agreement, Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador will negotiate an evaluation activity plan that will ensure that sufficient data and analysis are completed and available at appropriate intervals so that it might form the basis of discussions regarding the modification of this Agreement.

7.2 Subject to applicable legislation and polices governing the disclosure of personal information, Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador agree to share all pertinent information related to prospective and actual immigrants’ applications for nomination in the provincial nominee class, their application for permanent residence in Canada and settlement and integration in Canada, so as to maximize the effect of recruitment and retention efforts. This will include tracking of provincial nominees to Newfoundland and Labrador for a minimum of three years from their date of entry, as a basis for assessing the effectiveness of targeted recruitment and integration and retention activities.

7.3 Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador will ensure that any exchange of information shall be conducted in accordance with applicable federal and provincial legislation and in accordance with their policies relating to protection of privacy, access to information and security of records.

7.4 In order to facilitate the exchange of information between Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador, Newfoundland and Labrador will obtain from each nominee and his or her dependents a signed consent allowing Canada to share with Newfoundland and Labrador information regarding the nominee’s application, including the processing thereof.

7.5 Canada will provide Newfoundland and Labrador with statistical information on a quarterly basis, on average processing times of provincial nominees destined to Newfoundland and Labrador.

7.6 Canada will provide Newfoundland and Labrador with names and dates of landings of Newfoundland and Labrador-nominated provincial nominees at least quarterly.

8.0 OTHER

8.1 The official representatives for the purpose of communication and notification pursuant to this Agreement are:

  1. for Canada, the Director, Economic Policy and Programs, Immigration Branch; and
  2. for Newfoundland and Labrador, the Director, Trade and Investment, Industry, Trade and Rural Development.

8.2 Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador agree to meet bilaterally as necessary for the purpose of:

  1. ensuring that necessary communication for the furtherance of activities under this Agreement takes place, including the exchange of information regarding likely processing times for provincial nominees, and ways that Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador can cooperate to optimize these processing times; and
  2. providing a forum for the consideration and resolution of disputes between the parties with respect to the selection decisions of Canada regarding the admission, or denial of admission, of provincial nominee candidates.

8.3 Practices under this Agreement are subject to audit by the respective audit and evaluation agencies of Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador. The parties agree to provide full cooperation and information if, when and where such audits take place.

8.4 Subject to clause 8.6, this Agreement will remain in effect indefinitely.

8.5 In keeping with the purpose and scope of this Agreement, Canada will be open and transparent concerning its intention to enter into agreements with other provinces respecting provincial nominee programs. Canada will provide, at Newfoundland and Labrador’s request, other federal provincial agreements made under section 8 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, and will negotiate amendments to this Agreement, based on other Provincial Nominee Agreements and taking into consideration the different needs and circumstances of the provinces.

8.6 This Agreement may be amended by written agreement by the parties as identified in clause 8.1 at any time. This agreement may be terminated by either party at any time by providing twelve months’ notice in writing to the other. Both parties will take reasonable steps to reduce any costs attributable to a termination of the agreement, and to minimize any negative impacts on clients.

8.7 Newfoundland and Labrador will advise Canada on any proposed arrangement to be entered into with another party to carry out Newfoundland and Labrador’s responsibility under this Agreement.

8.8 This Agreement will come into effect on the date signed by the last of the parties to do so.

8.9 The French and English versions of this Agreement are equally authoritative.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF this Agreement has been signed by the parties on the dates written below.

FOR THE GOVERNMENT OF CANADA

The Honourable Monte Solberg
Minister,
Citizenship and Immigration

Witness

Date

FOR THE GOVERNMENT OF NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR

The Honourable Trevor Taylor,
Minister of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development

Witness

Date

The Honourable John Ottenheimer,
Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs
Minister Responsible for Francophone Affairs

Witness

Date

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