It is a modern version of a story told in the history books and Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall is heading off on a trade mission to Ireland today, joining the effort to recruit Irish immigrants to Canada.
The government and Saskatchewan businesses are hoping to recruit hundreds of skilled workers from the country which is struggling with very high unemployment.
Wall believes his presence on the trade mission will add legitimacy to the private sector bids to attract Irish workers.
“It’s important for us as we (go) on trade missions to lend as much credibility as we can to their efforts and to the extent I can do that I will,” he said.
Wall said the need for skilled labour in the province is so great that recruiting people from overseas is entirely valid. Looking beyond Canadian borders is only one part of the plan. He noted that the province is also investing in efforts to improve First Nations employment at home.
“It’s not an either, or situation, we need up to 90,000 skilled workers in the next number of years in this province,” Wall said.
The premier also has a stop-over in London where he plans to meet with mining companies that are contemplating significant investments in natural resources within the province.