As a refugee or displaced individual, you may have unique skills and experience to benefit Canada. You can use those talents by pursuing permanent residency through the new Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP) pathway. Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP) aims to assist refugees and other displaced individuals with the skills, expertise, and industry knowledge required to fill critical occupations in Canada. EMPP also helps to diversify the economy, reduces dependency on single industries, and promotes economic growth across many sectors.
The EMPP program is operated by IRCC and is in partnership with Talent Beyond Boundaries and RefugePoint. Refugees and other displaced individuals can apply for the program if they meet certain criteria, such as having a job offer in a Canadian company, proof that they do not have permanent residency status or an asylum claim in their home country, and have a strong economic settlement potential that is determined through a pre-departure medical assessment. Program applicants are also eligible to have their application fees and biometrics fee waived.
The EMPP combines refugee resettlement with economic immigration, allowing the Canadian government’s humanitarian and financial goals to be fulfilled in one integrated program. In 2021, the EMPP program helped settle approximately 500 skilled refugees in Canada and provided Canadian employers with access to new employees to help address labour shortages in several sectors.
How Does EMPP Work?
IRCC will connect eligible candidates with Canadian companies that are looking to fill labour shortages. These jobs include nurse aides, chefs, front desk clerks and construction trade laborers, among others. Applicants will receive a loan to cover the cost of relocating, and to help them start their life in Canada. Applicants will also receive general orientation information about Canada and connect to free services that will support their settlement in the country. This will prepare them for their arrival and ensure they are able to access the full range of benefits available to refugees in the country.
To qualify for EMPP, you must meet the following requirements:
- You are a Convention refugee or a person of concern.
- You have a positive Refugee Status Determination (RSD) from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees or a refugee-hosting nation.
The new EMPP Federal Skills no Job Offer pathway will open this summer, allowing other displaced people to apply for the program. This will make the process easier and faster by simplifying the application process and making sure all applicants meet uniform qualifying requirements. This will allow more refugees to gain permanent residence in Canada, and will benefit our local economies by diversifying our workforce. EMPP also provides opportunities for skilled refugees to gain work experience in the country, so they can build careers that they enjoy and thrive in.
The EMPP program helps skilled refugee and displaced people move to Canada for a better future. It has simplified application processes, multiple pathways and unique benefits that can make a difference for them and their families. It also gives Canadian employers access to talented, hardworking and resilient refugee candidates who can contribute to our economy.
We recently made changes to EMPP to make it easier for refugees to immigrate to Canada through one of the existing economic immigration programs. The new federal EMPP pathway, which includes both a Job Offer and No Job Offer stream, will still require that applicants meet the same work experience, education and language requirements, but it now provides exemptions for some of these requirements. Applicants can use a referral letter from a designated non-governmental organization to help them meet these requirements faster and more easily.
To qualify for EMPP, you must be a refugee with a positive Refugee Status Determination (RSD) or evidence of registration or record as a person of concern from the UN refugee agency or a host nation, and have a full-time job in an eligible occupation in Alberta or in Canada. This job can be in the same occupation you worked in your home country or a different profession.