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The Jamaican government wants more Jamaicans in Canada, U.S.

Staff writer |
The Jamaican government is seeking to expand the overseas employment programme so that more nationals can benefit from employment opportunities in Canada and the United States.

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Labour and Social Security Minister Derrick Kellier said the demand for skilled Jamaicans continue to grow in the two North American countries.

Mr. Kellier said the Canadian farm work programme should see a 10 to 15 per cent growth this year and "the same goes for the United States where we were down a couple years ago, but the numbers are creeping up again and we expect to see, based on new legislations that President Obama is trying to get through the Congress and the Senate, additional opportunities for us here in Jamaica, if that legislation is approved. So, there is going to be growth."

Mr. Kellier met with representatives of Caribbean Airlines (CAL) to formalise agreements for flying Jamaican workers to the US and Canada. He pointed out that Canada, in particular, has a huge labour market that needs to be filled and that Jamaica is currently doing well in filling some of that demand but "we can double the numbers in another three years".

Mr. Kellier said the programme is of mutual benefit to the countries involved, as it provides work for Jamaicans, so that they can take care of their families as well as help to generate economic activity within the US and Canada.

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