BAGUIO CITY – Filipino immigrants to Canada will be reaching the one million mark within five years because of the increased frequency of Filipinos wanting to migrate to the seventh most wanted destination in the world, Canadian Ambassador to the Philippines Neil Reeder said here.
Reeder, who met with officers of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) Baguio-Benguet Chapter at the Baguio Country Club (BCC) Monday, said there are around 850,000 Filipinos who have already migrated to Canada over the past several years and the number is rapidly increasing.
“The Philippines is the third source of immigrants to Canada after China and India and we greatly benefit from at least 30,000 Filipino immigrants that come to our country every year,” Ambassador Reeder stressed.
Aside from the influx of immigrants from different countries, the Canadian envoy disclosed their country is catering to the needs of over 10,000 temporary workers who help the country enhance their gas, oil and fuel sectors as well as those in the service, hospital and tourism sectors.
He cited Filipino migrants in Canada are gainfully employed, thus, they contribute to the growth of the Canadian economy through their taxes and the growth of the Philippine economy through their remittances to their families.
According to him, Filipino immigrants remit to the country a total of $1.5 billion annually or around 10 percent of the total remittances of Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) employed in different parts of the global village.
Ambassador Reeder said he wants more Filipino students to study in Canada through the various scholarship grants offered by different competent universities in his country, citing that only 2,500 students from the Philippines go to study in Canada annually.
He added Canada hosts around 300,000 international students a year, thus, he wants more Filipinos to avail of study grants offered by institutions in his country.
According to him, some 12 to 15 Canadian schools will be participating in a study fair in the country by February and March this year in order to get the attention of young and dynamic Filipino students to study in their country and advance their respective careers in their chosen fields of profession.
Ambassador Reeder cited the resilience of Filipino immigrants who work hard to earn income for their families and live decently in the country, saying that Filipinos usually excel in health care delivery among other jobs that require expertise.
“We are looking to mainly export to the Philippines goods and services but we are also looking for Philippine investments back to Canada which is likely coming in the future,” Ambassador Reeder added.
Reeder assured local businessmen that Canadian companies will continue making huge investments to the Philippines in the future which would greatly contribute in uplifting the economic standing of the Philippines and make it one of the most progressive economies in Southeast Asia within the next several years.