Federal Immigration Minister John McCallum says the government will be looking at ways to make the immigration process easier for international students.
"International students are the best source of immigrants, in the sense that they're educated, they're young, they speak English or French, they know something of the country," he said. "So we should be doing everything we can do to court them."
He said the existing Express Entry System makes it difficult for students to gain permanent residence.
The Express Entry system is a computerized program that matches students with potential employers, but many students have been rejected by the program because it prioritizes immigrants who are skilled workers.
The system was introduced on Jan. 1, 2015, by the previous Conservative government; before that, it was a straightforward process for international students to apply for permanent residence.
McCallum said the federal government will work with provinces on ways to reform the points-based system.
Those reforms may include increasing the number of points an applicant for permanent residence gets simply by virtue of being an international student.
It could also mean decreasing the number of points applicants gain for receiving a permanent job offer, since students often struggle to get job offers that have government approval.
Although the exact nature of the reforms have yet to be determined, McCallum said the federal government recognizes the importance of encouraging international students to stay in the country.
"The bottom line is that we definitely want to be more welcoming to international students and we will have more concrete proposals in the not too distant future," he said.
- Original Article from CBC