GNWT to participate in Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot

News Releases

Yellowknife — February 20, 2023

The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) has joined the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot, which is designed to help employers in Canada connect with and hire skilled refugees overseas.

The GNWT has opted to participate in this pilot to give employers another option to address the realities of the labour market in the Northwest Territories (NWT) and Canada. Through the pilot, employers will be able to access a new pool of potential employees.

Hiring through the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot enables employers to partner with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) who will help them navigate the world of hiring refugees overseas, including finding and hiring candidates and providing employment-related resources and immigration-related services to candidates.

Partner NGOs charge fees to employers for use of their services with the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot. The cost to recruit an employee through the pilot is between $5,000 and $10,000 and includes visa, relocation and in some cases, the cost of temporary accommodation on arrival.


“The Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot will give NWT employers access to a new pool of potential employees while providing refugees with the opportunity to move to the territory and start a new life. With so many NWT businesses and economic sectors needing to re-build after the COVID-19 pandemic, immigration is one way that the GNWT can help grow and develop a strong labour pool from which to draw employees, complementing the existing pool of NWT residents.”

- R.J. Simpson, Minister of Education, Culture and Employment

“The Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot is a groundbreaking initiative that allows skilled refugees to build a new life and career in Canada, while giving employers access to a new pool of global talent. I look forward to working with GNWT as a partner in the EMPP and to continuing to deliver innovative immigration tools that help employers address critical labour shortages.”

The Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship

Quick facts

  • In 2018, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada launched the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot to provide complementary pathways to permanent residence for skilled refugees.
  • Over the next few years, Canada is aiming to work with employers and communities across the country to expand the pilot and welcome 2,000 skilled refugees to fill specific labour shortages in high-demand sectors, such as health care, skilled trades and information technology.
  • The Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot removes barriers refugees may experience due to their displacement. This includes waiving some fees, making it easier to prove their work experience, and letting them use loans to fund travel costs, settlement needs, start-up costs and fees that cannot be waived. In most cases, IRCC processes applications within six months.
  • Many jurisdictions are already participating in the pilot through their Nominee Program, including: British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Ontario,  Prince Edward Island and the Yukon.

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For media requests, please contact:

Briony Grabke

Manager, Public Affairs and Communications

Department of Education, Culture and Employment

Government of the Northwest Territories

867-767-9352 Ext. 71073


Communications Branch

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada