A media report on Tuesday said that some Indian students in Canada claim their country uses them as a cheap labor force and discards them after they are no longer required.
In response to the severe labor shortages in Canada and the high unemployment rate, which dropped to 5.2% in September, Immigration Minister Sean Fraser announced a new temporary solution, according to a Bloomberg report.
The government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, according to the report, introduced the permit extension measure to allow the more than 5,000,00 international students already residing in Canada to potentially work additional hours and remain for an additional 18 months after graduation to look for employment.
However, some of these hopefuls for permanent residents have been left without permission to work or stay in the nation after more than a year.
Daniel D’Souza, an accountant and former Seneca College student near Toronto, told Bloomberg, “I’m essentially sitting at home and living off of my money… Canada should value foreign students more, not just use them as a sort of cheap labor.”
Canada is the second most popular location for Indians seeking academic degrees abroad, with 1.83 lakh of them enrolling in education at various levels there. According to Immigration Minister Sean Fraser, Canada has handled more than 4.52 lakh study visa applications since January, a 23 percent rise from the 3.67 lakh handled during the same period the previous year.
India accounted for one-third of the 6.20 lakh+ people living in Canada in 2021. Many graduates who participated in the 2021 program were forced to quit their jobs when their work permits ran out, and there is no assurance that they will be granted permanent status.
According to Bloomberg, students could wait months without a job, salary, or social or health benefits even if their applications are ultimately accepted. They used us as a resource when they needed to. Anshdeep Bindra, a former consultant at Ernst & Young in Toronto, told Bloomberg that “nobody shows up when we need their help or support.”
Indian grads who had anticipated the permission extension would provide them more time to get Canadian work experience became bogged down in a backlog of applications that forced a 10-month system halt to allow the government to review them.
The students’ prospects of being granted permanent residency were diminished once the system was put into operation since they were forced to compete with immigrant groups who had scored far better than average, according to the research.
As a result of its high standard of education, welcoming immigration and visa policies, and better living chances, Canada is a popular choice for students migrating overseas. After completing their studies, the majority of Indian students want to stay in Canada permanently.
In part because of their prior experience residing in Canada on temporary visas, overseas students who are granted permanent residence have a tendency to assimilate into the labor market rapidly. According to MEA data, 64,667 Indians who were considering studying abroad in the first half of 2022 chose the United States as their country of choice, with Canada coming in second (60,258).
In 2019, Canada was the country of choice for 1,32,620 Indian students before the outbreak. According to the MEA, the number fell to 43,624 in 2020 after Covid-19 broke out before dramatically increasing to 1,02,688 in 2021.
Thousands of graduates who choose to immigrate permanently each year serve as a source of young, educated employees in addition to the government’s estimate that international students contribute more than C$21 billion ($15.3 billion) yearly to the economy. In a paper released last month, economists from the Royal Bank of Canada stated that they can be crucial in solving the current labor shortage and future labor market needs.
The government has to “prioritize those who paid for education here, have experience here, and are connected with employers here,” according to Amira Ali, a leading expert for a Calgary property management company. We are being forced into a corner and are left with no options, they are doing that.
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