Canada immigration: Details of Federal Skilled Worker Program revealed

The long-awaited details of the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), which will re-open on May 4, were released by the Canadian Government yesterday. The details include the occupation priority list, the organizations eligible to carry out the educational credential assessments and the cap on application intake.

The occupation priority list

The priority occupations list determines whether there is demand for a profession in Canada. The FSWP only accepts applications from applicants who have experience in at least one of the occupations on the priority List.

The priority list for the FSWP of this year has 24 occupations, which are the following:

•       Engineering managers

•       Financial and investment analysts

•       Geoscientists and oceanographers

•       Civil engineers

•       Mechanical engineers

•       Chemical engineers

•       Mining engineers

•       Geological engineers

•       Petroleum engineers

•       Aerospace engineers

•       Computer engineers (except software engineers/designers)

•       Land surveyors

•       Computer programmers and interactive media developers

•       Industrial instrument technicians and mechanics

•       Inspectors in public and environmental health and occupational health and safety

•       Audiologists and speech-language pathologists

•       Physiotherapists

•       Occupational Therapists

•       Medical laboratory technologists

•       Medical laboratory technicians and pathologists’ assistants

•       Respiratory therapists, clinical perfusionists and cardiopulmonary technologists

•       Medical radiation technologists

•       Medical sonographers

•       Cardiology technicians and electrophysiological diagnostic technologists, n.e.c. (not elsewhere classified)

Educational Credential Assessment

As part of recent changes to the FSWP, the Canadian government has made it mandatory applicants have their education abroad assessed against Canadian education standards by designated organisations.

For the FSWP of this year three organizations have been identified to carry out the education credential assessments for general occupations, which are the following:

a.      World Education Services

b.      Comparative Education Services

c.      International Credentials Assessment Services of Canada

A fourth organisation was identified, being the Medical Council of Canada. However, the designation of this organisation is dubious. Deepak Kohli, President of the Canadian-based Transcend Consultants said: ”It appears that the 4th organization will have a very extremely limited application, as it can only be used for medical professionals, who are not on the list.

Application cap

The number of applications that will be accepted under the FSWC of this year will be restricted to 5000. Further, there will be cap of 300 applications per occupation.

Popular occupation categories can be closed within days, if not hours because of the limited intake. Applicants are advised to apply on May 4, directly as the application intake has re-opened.

The FSWP is the most popular immigration program to Canada and has been closed for applications for a year. Important changes have been made by Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Jason Kenney, who commented:

“The government’s focus remains on jobs, economic growth, and long-term prosperity. Under the new Federal Skilled Worker Program, Canada will be able to attract the skilled immigrants our economy requires, who are the most likely to succeed and contribute their full skill set to the Canadian economy.”

The requirements for application to the FSWP were announced earlier. Until the start of the intake these will remain unchanged, assured the Minister. The requirements are the following:

- Have at least 1 year of full-time paid work experience in the last 10 years;

- Demonstrate at least adequate-intermediate language proficiency in English or French;

- Obtain at least 67 points on the reworked point grid, which is based on factors such as language proficiency, age, work experience, education, adaptability; and

- Have foreign credentials assessed, authenticated, and given an equivalent value in Canada.

Minister Kenney furthermore assured that applications to the FSWP will be processed within approximately a year.

April 19, 2013



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