A study by Statistics Canada shows that the number of Post-Graduation Work Permit(PGWP) Program holders entering the Canadian workforce has increased over the past few years. The study also found that almost three quarters of all PGWP holders transitioned to permanent residence within five years of obtaining the PGWP. This transition rate was higher among PGWP holders for college and master’s level programs.
The Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) Program
The PGWP program is a temporary worker program which allows international students to stay and work in Canada after completing their studies. The students who apply under this program will obtain an open work permit, provided they have completed their education in one of the post-secondary education institutions of Canada. Also, the duration of the study program should be at least eight months. The validity of the work permit can be up to three years, depending on the duration of the study program. As the PGWP is an open work permit, the holder can take up any occupation anywhere in Canada. They can also change their employers anytime they want.
PGWP Program helps international student to gain Canadian work experience as well as the job experience that make them eligible to apply for permanent residence under various immigration streams. Canadian education and Canadian work experience allow the students to gain more Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score points while they apply for permanent residence through the Express Entry system. Various Provincial Nominee Programs as well as the Quebec Experience Program (PEQ) also prioritise PGWP holders who have aquired Canadian work experience.
Study on PGWP holders
The study by Statistics Canada found that the annual number of new Post-Graduation Work Permit(PGWP) holders increased six-fold, from 10300 to 64700, during the period between 2008 and 2018. Also, the number of first-time study permit holders in Canada rose from around 75000 in mid-2000s to 250000 in 2019. The proportion of international students choosing to obtain PGWP has also increased, according to the study.
China and India are the two major source countries of PGWP holders. While the PGWP holders from these two countries constituted 51% in 2008, it rose to 66% in 2018. Notably, the number of international students from India increased by more than four times, from 10% in 2008 to 46% in 2018. At the same time, the number of Chinese students decreased from 41% to 20% during the same period.
Ontario remained to be the favourite work destination of international students. The students choosing Ontario increased from 44% in 2008 to 56% in 2018.
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