Canadian Government to Set Limits on Temporary Resident Arrivals and Workers

Key Points  

  • Canada is planning upcoming changes to its Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) Program  
  • Changes will take effect starting on May 1, 2024 
  • The number of temporary foreign workers allowed will be reduced in some sectors  

Canadian Government to Reduce the Number of New Temporary Residents 

Later this year, the Canadian government plans to set a cap for the number of new temporary residents that it will accept, and it will also reduce the number of workers in certain sectors.  

For the first time, the Canadian Immigration Agency will decrease the number of temporary resident arrivals that it accepts. In September 2024, the federal government will reduce the maximum limit of temporary residents to 5% of the population through 2027. Currently, temporary residents comprise 6.2% of the total population.  

Changes to the Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) Program Starting in May 2024 

On May 1, 2024, the government will implement several changes to the Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) Program. First, it will limit the number of workers seeking employment in certain sectors. Currently, businesses are permitted to have 30% of their workforce comprised of temporary foreign workers. However, starting in May, that number will drop to 20%, with the exception of the construction and healthcare sectors. Additionally, employers will need to make best efforts to explore every option before applying for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), including considering asylum seekers holding valid work permits for available jobs before they apply for LMIAs for prospective temporary foreign workers. Lastly, LMIAs will have a reduced validity period of six months, which is a decrease from the previous 12-month validity period.  

Employers are reminded that they are also required to review the wages of their temporary foreign workers annually to ensure those wages reflect increases to prevailing wage rates for their occupation and work location. Employers must pay their workers the same wage annually if wages do not increase. They are not permitted to reduce an employee’s annual salary. Additional information and instructions regarding this requirement is available in our previous blog.  

Looking Ahead  

The Canadian government will continue to watch labour market conditions to make sure that the TFW Program protects the rights of temporary foreign workers and reflects Canada’s economic needs. You can also continue to check Envoy Global’s website for the latest updates and information. 

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Content in this publication is for informational purposes only and not intended as legal advice, nor should it be relied on as such. For additional information on the issues discussed, consult an attorney at Corporate Immigration Partners, P.C., or another qualified professional of your choosing. On non-U.S. immigration issues, consult your Envoy representative, or another qualified representative of your choosing.