Canada, Australia and New Zealand in the news

Possum in a brick shed

Watch out for the power cable climbing possums in New Zealand

Here’s the latest news – with an industry and immigration focus where possible – from Canada, Australia and New Zealand:

Canada: skill shortages and immigration

A lot of Canadian news has been about their critical skill shortages, being felt by a range of industries. For example, in British Columbia they’re enjoying plenty of shipbuilding contracts, new liquefied natural gas plants and a booming mining sector. All great – apart from the fact there won’t be enough trained workers to fill the expected jobs surge.

According to Canadian Business:

“The government is projecting that among the one million job openings expected by 2020, 43 per cent will require skilled workers. It predicts there will be a gap of 22,000 to 32,000 people in northern B.C. [British Columbia] alone.”

These fears have been echoed on a national level with the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, Diane Finley, taking the stage at the Canadian Chamber of Commerce’s Annual General Meeting to deliver a keynote speech about how to tackle Canada’s skills and labour crisis.

As part of a government initiative to discover the Top 10 barriers to Canadian Competitiveness came four key priorities identified by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. One of these priorities should be immigration – and specifically “ensuring immigration policy is aligned with local labour markets and employers’ needs”.

Read the full Top 10 barriers to Canadian Competitiveness report here.

Australia: positivity in jobs and migration

Coming off the back of the good news that Australian job vacancies have risen 4.2% in August 2012 was a report released by the International Monetary Fund showing that flexibility in the workforce will help Australia to ride out other global economic storms.

The report also identifies that temporary and permanent skilled migration will be vital so that workers can move across regions and industries:

“Their ability to do so will again be tested when investment in the resources sector comes off its peak and some labour currently employed there is to be absorbed by the rest of the economy.”

The full report can be viewed here.

New Zealand: pies and possums

It’s been a light-hearted news week in New Zealand, with a couple of ‘only in New Zealand’ moments.

This includes a pie-lover on a mission to restore a classic piece of the Kiwi culinary scene – the Georgie Pie. Apparently these tasty delicacies are unlikely to comply with today’s standards for fat and salt content. See the New Zealand Herald for more.

The culprit of a blackout across Gisborne in New Zealand’s north island has been found – a possum inadvertently climbing a power pylon. Makes a change from someone accidentally cutting through a cable at least…

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