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Truck drivers included in Canada’s Express Entry program

Canada widens permanent residency program to include immigrant transport drivers

The Canadian Trucking Alliance estimates that by 2024 there could be as many as 50,000 job vacancies for truck drivers across the country. (Photo: Shutterstock)

Commercial truck driving is now one of the occupations included in Canada’s Express Entry program to recruit immigrants for high-demand sectors.

Sean Fraser, minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), announced Wednesday the implementation of the revised national occupational classification (NOC). The move opens up doors to permanent residency under the Express Entry immigration program for 16 new occupations, including health care, construction and transport jobs.

“We are using all of the tools at our disposal to tackle labor shortages … these changes will support Canadians in need of these services, and they will support employers by providing them with a more robust workforce who we can depend on to drive our economy forward into a prosperous future,” Fraser said in a news release.

Canada’s trucking industry currently has openings for almost 30,000 driving jobs, officials said, with the total job vacancies expected to increase to 50,000 jobs by 2024.

The Canadian Trucking Alliance said the vacancy rate in the trucking industry is about 8% compared to a 5.4% rate for general employment.

“Every sector of the Canadian economy relies on the trucking industry,” Stephen Laskowski, president of Canadian Trucking Alliance, said in a statement. “[The] announcement by Minister Fraser will help secure supply chains — from agriculture to manufacturing — by providing trucking companies access to an international workforce that was not previously available to our sector.”


NOC is the national reference for occupations in Canada, providing a classification structure and disseminating occupational data for labor market information. Express Entry is Canada’s flagship application management system for those seeking to immigrate to Canada permanently.

Watch: Steering recruiting amid an ‘exhausted’ labor market.

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13 Comments

  1. Pedro

    Well….what about truck drivers from the UK, are they in the same category as a…let’s say an Indian, african or even asian driver?? Well im Portuguese and I’m a dawn good driver, never had a accident or even am incident. When you put yourself a bit uncomfortable thats when your consistency plays in. What should have been done is that exchanging your licence for example a UK Lorry licence for a class 1 canadian should be the same regardless, the language is the same, the motoring is the same what changes is the side of the steering wheel, which doesnt make any difference if you ask me.
    Let’s not put every driver in the same category shall we.

  2. Steve Corcoran

    So Canada, whose Prime minister is a worthless piece of crap, passed laws allowing new immigrants leeway as long as they drive commercial trucks. Since the Canadian government is incompetent, and did not think this issue through, the immigration program now steers individuals with ABSOLUTELY NO EXPERIENCE driving commercial vehicles to immigrate to Canada, AS LONG AS THEY BECOME COMMERCIAL TRUCK DRIVERS. The result . . . . . . thousands more deaths on Canada’s highways since any desperate individual would claim to be a career truck driver if it means they could escape persecution. Let’s not claim this is an issue that was not created by the Canadian government, because it IS. They need to quit trying to blame the immigrants (even though immigrant business-men have started schools teaching new arrivals how to cheat to pass the test). The blame lies with the Canadian government, who passed the laws without considering the implications.

  3. Cho Macdomat Ngwashi

    Am a Cameroonian by nationality i have worked as a commercial truck driver on tractors and trailers since 1988 in Cameroon and some Central African Countries, i will be grateful if my request will be granted.

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Noi Mahoney

Noi Mahoney is a Texas-based journalist who covers cross-border trade, logistics and supply chains for FreightWaves. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in English in 1998. Mahoney has more than 20 years experience as a journalist, working for newspapers in Florida, Maryland and Texas. Contact [email protected]