In a paper released this month entitled “Temporary Residents, Permanent Benefits: How temporary residents fill vacancies, pay taxes, and keep the local economy rolling”, author Samrul Aahad found temporary residents contributed more than $500 billion to the economy of Northern Ontario.
The paper states most temporary Northerners are study permit holders seeking educational opportunities mainly in the districts of Sudbury, Thunder Bay and Algoma.
Aahad also found most temporary residents, whether in Ontario to study or work, were coming to Northern Ontario from India.
In terms of the type of work they’re doing, temporary residents are working mainly in the fields of food service supervisors, transport truck drivers, welders and related machine operators.
“The positive economic impact of just 11,000 temporary residents in Northern Ontario is a huge opportunity for communities,” said Thomas Mercier, project co-ordinator at Réseau du Nord. “Attracting and retaining individuals such as international students or temporary foreign workers and their families can bring communities one step closer to ensuring long-term growth.”
The North’s aging workforce and limited immigration has economic impacts, the paper states.
“One effect of this is less people are paying income taxes and even less people are available to fill already vacant job positions,” the paper states.
In terms of strategies, finding means of retaining more of those temporary residents and turning them into permanent ones will pay dividends for Northern Ontario’s economy.