The latest report produced by New Brunswick Multicultural Council (NBMC) warns that New Brunswick is gravitating towards an imminent loss of 110, 200 workers by 2026 as a result of an ageing population as well as permanent exit from the workforce. Only 76, 000 students will be produced by New Brunswick’s high schools in this same period according to estimates. This represents a gap of 34, 200 workers in the decade ahead. This is obviously an issue that must be met with an immediate and adequate provision. Immigration into the province must be raised to numbers in the range of 7, 500 newcomers per year in order for the province to be able to bridge this huge population and labour market gap.
The labour shortfall is already impacting the economy of the province which has led to the relocation of some workers to other parts of the country and some others to the United States. In the same vein, if Brunswick does not achieve a sustained labour market and population growth, it will experience tax revenue shortfall which could seriously handicap the public services of the province. An example of such is the health sector which requires even more attention as a result of care for their ageing population.
Federal Government and New Brunswick Must Work Together
NBMC has urged the federal government of Canada to join forces with this country to achieve a one (1%) percent increase in the province’s population per year through immigration. This will be almost double of what is obtainable at the moment. Alex LeBlanc, the NBMC Executive Director said this new projection is a responsible one in Canada’s context given that Canada welcomes almost one percent of its total population each year and Brunswick is facing an urgent demographic and labour market challenges.
Retaining youth and getting people born in this Nation to move back into the Province cannot meet the huge need; hence immigration must increase significantly.
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