| 10.3°C Dublin

Now Canada cries out for our workers

CANADA is sending out a call for thousands of Irish workers.

Its strong economy and labour shortage in a wide variety of occupations means it is now ahead of the US and just behind Australia when it comes to Irish emigration.

Massive infrastructural projects and booming fisheries, mining, oil and natural gas industries has Canada crying out for workers,

Ambassador Loyola Hearn said: "I'm hearing numbers like between 30,000 and 40,000 in construction alone."

All 5,000 holiday work visas open to anyone between the ages of 18 and 35 were snapped up this year, prompting immigration officials to increase the quota to 5,350 for 2012.

There are no official statistics available but it's estimated that around 10,000 Irish have already relocated to Canada over the past two years -- with more jobs to come.

"We've surpassed the US now with emigration and are second behind Australia," he said.

"Every week I meet people who say they have a son or daughter there, but I have yet to say they had a bad experience," the ambassador said.


The Canadian embassy held a jobs fair at Croke Park last weekend focusing on job opportunities in the four Atlantic provinces of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island where opportunities exist in every field, from construction, aerospace and finance to gaming, film and television production and IT.

There is also a huge demand for workers in British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan.

There is a wide range of salaries and perks depending on the job and levels of experience, but many of the skilled jobs pay well.

Rents vary according to the location with major cities like Toronto and Vancouver commanding rents starting at $1,000 (¤720) a month for a small apartment, but they can be as low as $500 (¤360) a month in smaller towns and cities.

And such is the level of emigration and business between Canada and Ireland that the embassy is currently spearheading a campaign to establish regular direct flights between the two countries, Mr Hearn added.

The only direct flights currently operate on a seasonal basis to the major hubs of Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver.