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Conference paper

Lessons from Canada: The Economic Necessity to Make All Guestworker Regimes '2-Step Immigration Program Facilitating Just-In-Time Integration and Circular Migration'




Denise Helly, Eugénie Depatie-Pelletier, and Adrienne Gibson


Western States have developed a range of national and bilateral programs to identify sectoral labour shortages and admit just-in-time foreign workers under temporary rather than permanent legal status. Statistics on occupations filled between 2004 and 2009 by guestworkers in Canada (Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Alberta and British Columbia) show that some labour shortages addressed by the presence of guestworkers were less acute than others. Moreover, researchers have recently identified that the presence of guestworkers in Canada have or would put a significant downward pressure on the wages and work conditions of certain categories of local workers. This downward pressure has been explained, in particular, by the restrictions on rights and freedoms of certain groups of guestworkers. In order to minimize the negative economic impact of guestworkers programs while maximizing their economic benefits, states need to restructure temporary work regimes as 2-step immigration programs facilitating “just-in-time” integration and circular migration.

Conference name

International CRIMT Conference

Conference location


Number of pages


File Attachments


Economic sectors

General relevance - all sectors

Content types

Policy analysis, Current Policy, and Numbers of migrant workers

Target groups

Policymakers and Researchers

Geographical focuses

Ontario, Alberta, Manitoba, Quebec, British Columbia, and National relevance