Ministers Bains and Hajdu announce Canada’s Global Skills Strategy

News Release

New Global Talent Stream to help Canadian businesses support the creation of good jobs for Canadians

March 9, 2017 – Toronto, Ontario – Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

The Government of Canada’s new Global Skills Strategy will facilitate faster access to top global talent for companies doing business in Canada that are committing to bring new skills to Canada and create more Canadian jobs. Whether bringing in professionals to train Canadian workers or hiring global talent with highly specialized, in-demand skills, the Global Skills Strategy will help innovative firms in Canada thrive, creating economic growth and good middle-class jobs.

As part of this strategy, the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, and the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, today announced that the Global Skills Strategy, including the Global Talent Stream of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program will be launched on June 12, 2017.

This initiative will help high-growth Canadian companies attract the specialized global talent they need to innovate and grow by providing a faster and more predictable streamlined service. It will also assist Canadian firms in filling in-demand occupations where there is a demonstrated gap in the Canadian labour market. Under the new stream, a Global Talent List of eligible high-demand occupations is being developed in consultation with labour market experts and key stakeholders.

This will result in timely, responsive and predictable service that enables companies to attract top talent to scale up, create good middle-class jobs at home and remain globally competitive.

The Strategy will track employers’ commitments to create jobs, transfer knowledge and train Canadian workers, facilitating new investment in Canada.

The Government of Canada continues to consult the provinces and territories, businesses and industry stakeholders on the implementation of the Global Skills Strategy.

The global demand for highly skilled talent in the knowledge economy is outpacing the supply, leaving companies in Canada without the talent needed to fill vacancies and grow their business. The Global Skills Strategy will make it easier for companies doing business in Canada to hire highly trained people, both in Canada and abroad, and will position this country as a global innovation leader. That’s a key part of the Innovation Agenda, the Government of Canada’s plan to create good quality, high-paying jobs for the middle class and those working hard to join it.


“Canada continues to compete in a global innovation race. As technologies become more widely available to everyone, the only competitive edge for countries and businesses is the distinctive talent and creativity of their people. While skilled immigrants are now identifying Canada as a country of choice in which to apply their knowledge and ideas, we also need to prepare our homegrown talent for a rapidly changing job market. Our government wants to create good quality, high-paying jobs for the middle class and those working hard to join it.”

– The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

“When companies in Canada can thrive and grow, they create more jobs. Our government’s Global Skills Strategy will give employers a faster and more predictable process for bringing in top talent and new skills to Canada, creating economic growth and more middle-class jobs for Canadians.”

– The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour

“The Global Skills Strategy makes Canada more attractive for companies by facilitating access to high-skilled talent needed for economic growth. The components of this initiative are coming together and when fully implemented later this year, we believe that Canadians will see the results—innovative companies growing and creating new jobs across a range of industries.”

– The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship

“The current visa process for bringing world-class foreign talent to Canada is not competitive. The fast-track initiative introduced today by the federal government will significantly assist Peraso in scaling the company to compete for business at a global level.”

– Ronald Glibbery, President and CEO, Peraso Technologies

“The Global Skills Strategy will help high-growth Canadian technology firms by making it easier and faster to attract and acquire the global talent they need to scale up and compete on the world stage. Canada’s most successful innovators welcome the new two-week turnaround standard for work permit applications, the streamlined process for applications, and the continued efforts of the federal government in supporting Canada’s tech sector and especially helping Canadian companies scale up. Our CEOs welcome the federal government’s continued engagement and collaboration on strategies that provide our high-growth scaling companies with better access to talent.”

– Benjamin Bergen, Executive Director, Council of Canadian Innovators

Quick Facts

  • The Global Talent Stream is one of the pillars of the Government of Canada’s Global Skills Strategy, which aims to help innovative companies grow by ensuring they can access the highly skilled talent they need quickly. Other elements of the Strategy that have been previously announced include:

    • establishing a two-week standard for processing work permit applications (and temporary resident visas when applicable) for highly skilled talent;
    • creating a dedicated service for companies looking to make significant job-creating investments in Canada; and
    • dropping the work permit requirement for short-term highly skilled work (for instance, 30 days or less in a 12-month period) and brief academic stays.
  • Companies applying for workers through the Global Talent Stream will have access to the new streamlined application process that will provide:

    • client-focused service to help guide eligible employers through the application process and the development of the Labour Market Benefits Plan, with a service standard of 10 business days; and
    • eligibility for workers to have their work permit applications processed in 10 business days.

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Follow Minister Bains on Twitter: @MinisterISED

Follow Minister Hajdu on Twitter: @MinWorkDev

Nilani Logeswaran
Office of the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

Matt Pascuzzo
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour

Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada
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