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Section 1: Overview

Minister’s Message

I am pleased to submit to Parliament the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) Departmental Performance Report for 2006-2007.

Since I became Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, the Department has taken important steps to make our immigration system work for Canada while building on our country’s humanitarian tradition. As Minister of CIC, I strive to ensure that our immigration program responds to our needs as a country in a way that is fair and transparent, while adhering to the rule of law, and protecting the health, safety, and security of Canadians.

With a quarter of a million people coming to our country each year as immigrants, and an additional million or so as visitors — whether they be tourists, students, or temporary foreign workers — our great nation is indeed a destination of choice.

Our country benefits from the skills and enthusiasm that newcomers bring. Ensuring that Canada has the people and skills it needs to prosper in the 21st century involves making the best use of the human resources that we have. In order to maximize the social, cultural and economic benefits that newcomers bring to our communities, CIC launched a number of important initiatives to support the successful integration of newcomers, and to meet our labour market needs.

To this effect, we allocated $1.3 billion in settlement funding over the next five years to help newcomers improve their language skills, find work and family support. We implemented a comprehensive agreement with Ontario on our shared immigration responsibilities which, ultimately, will make the system work better for newcomers. We also signed a new Agreement for Canada-Alberta Cooperation on Immigration. This agreement will help Alberta attract immigrants more quickly and ensure that our immigration programs meet Alberta’s needs and the needs of newcomers.

Working with our provincial and territorial partners, we followed through on our commitment to enhance assessment and recognition of foreign credentials by opening the Foreign Credentials Referral Office. The new office will help newcomers access what they need to become accredited, both in Canada for those newcomers already here, and abroad for those waiting for the opportunity to come to Canada. The office provides referral services on the Canadian labour market and credential assessment processes through a dedicated 1-800 number and in-person service offered through Service Canada centres across the country, online services and in-person service overseas.

To ensure that we have the human resources that we need, we also developed ways to make it easier, faster, and less costly for employers to access the workers that they need. These changes will allow employers to reduce how long and how widely they must advertise available jobs before they are eligible to apply to hire a foreign worker. At the same time, we began working with Human Resources and Social Development Canada (HRSDC), Service Canada, and the provinces and territories on new measures to ensure that employers comply with program terms and conditions.

We also began developing a new avenue for immigration, which will permit, under certain conditions, foreign students with Canadian credentials and skilled work experience, along with skilled temporary foreign workers who are already in Canada, to apply for permanent residence.

In order to address the unique needs of victims of human trafficking, we developed guidelines for immigration officers, under which victims would be eligible to receive a fee-exempt Temporary Resident Permit that allows them to stay in Canada for up to 120 days, since extended further to 180 days, with access to health-care benefits under the Interim Federal Health Program.

We launched a public awareness campaign aimed at Permanent Residents, reminding them that these cards need to be renewed every five years.

To mark the 60th anniversary of Canadian citizenship in 2007, we launched celebrations and began to take steps to improve laws that govern citizenship in Canada. Bill C-14 contained amendments to eliminate excessive distinctions in the way that the Citizenship Act treats foreign-born children adopted by Canadian citizens, and received Royal Assent.

We also launched a public-information campaign directed at those who may have lost, or are at risk of losing, their citizenship, or wish to regain it.

And using the powers available to me as Minister under the Citizenship Act, I also obtained approval through the Governor in Council for a special grant of citizenship to individuals who did not meet the provisions within the current legislation for a regular citizenship grant, but whose circumstances called for special consideration.

I also announced my intention to table in the House a bill proposing a series of amendments to the Citizenship Act that would resolve most of the citizenship issues for individuals whose citizenship is in question. This bill would also eliminate onerous and confusing citizenship requirements.

We also furthered our humanitarian reputation as a country by accepting for resettlement those who are most in need of protection, involving more than 32,000 refugees and other protected persons from around the world. Among other things, we committed to resettle up to 5,000 Bhutanese refugees who have been living in camps in Nepal since the 1990s.

In order to maintain the integrity of our immigration system, we renewed our information-sharing agreement with the United States under the Government of Canada’s Multiple Borders Strategy, so that potential violators of immigration laws can be intercepted prior to arrival.

Finally, as part of our ongoing efforts to serve clients better, we implemented changes to our electronic services at our overseas offices to allow foreign nationals to enquire about the status of their visa applications by e-mail from anywhere in the world. As well, 71 percent of people who used our Call Centre reported being very satisfied with their experience.

These accomplishments would not have been possible without the dedicated employees of CIC who have contributed their talent and expertise to promote Canada as the truly great nation that it is. I would like to thank each of them for their hard work and dedication in this regard.

The Honourable Diane Finley P.C., MP
Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Management Representation Statement

I submit for tabling in Parliament, the 2006-2007 Departmental Performance Report for Citizenship and Immigration Canada.

This document has been prepared based on the reporting principles contained in the Guide for the Preparation of Part III of the 2006-2007 Estimates: Reports on Plans and Priorities and Departmental Performance Reports.

  • It adheres to the specific reporting requirements outlined in the Treasury Board Secretariat guidance;
  • It is based on the Department’s approved Strategic Outcomes and Program Activity Architecture that were approved by the Treasury Board;
  • It presents consistent, comprehensive, balanced and reliable information;
  • It provides a basis of accountability for the results achieved with the resources and authorities entrusted to it; and
  • It reports finances based on approved numbers from the Estimates and the Public Accounts of Canada.


Signed: ___________________________       Date: ___________________

Richard B. Fadden
Deputy Minister

Summary Information

Vision, Mission and Mandate

Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) [note 1] is responsible for selecting immigrants and temporary residents and assisting with immigrant settlement and integration — including the granting of citizenship — while offering Canada’s protection to refugees and those in refugee-like situations. CIC is also responsible for developing Canada’s admissibility policy, setting the conditions to enter and remain in Canada, and conducting screening of immigrants and temporary residents to protect the health, safety and security of Canadians. In so doing, CIC, in collaboration with its partners, fulfils its role in identifying applicants who could pose risks to Canada for reasons including security, criminality, organized crime, and violation of human and international rights.

CIC has over 4000 employees in Canada and abroad. [note 2] It has 43 points of service in Canada and 90 [note 3] points of service in 77 other countries.


An approach to immigration that:

  • Responds to the needs of communities in all parts of the country by creating opportunities for individuals to come to Canada to make an economic, social, cultural and civic contribution while also realizing their full potential, with a view to becoming citizens;
  • Supports global humanitarian efforts to assist those in need of protection.


CIC, with its partners, will build a stronger Canada by:

  • Developing and implementing policies, programs and services that:
    • Facilitate the arrival of persons and their integration to Canada in a way that maximizes their contribution to the country while protecting the health, safety and security of Canadians;
    • Maintain Canada’s humanitarian tradition by protecting refugees and persons in need of protection; and
    • Enhance the values and promote the rights and responsibilities of Canadian citizenship.
  • Advancing global migration policies in a way that supports Canada’s immigration and humanitarian objectives.

The Department was created through legislation in 1994 to link immigration services with citizenship registration to promote the unique ideals all Canadians share and to help build a stronger Canada. CIC derives its mandate from the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA), which is the result of major legislative reform in 2002, and from the Citizenship Act of 1977. Immigration is an area of shared jurisdiction with provinces and territories under the Constitution Act, 1867.

As a result of government reorganizations that saw a number of CIC’s key functions transferred to the new Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), [note 4] responsibility for administering IRPA is now shared between CIC and the CBSA. The organizations work collaboratively to achieve and balance the facilitation and enforcement objectives of the immigration program.

Financial Resources Used (in $ Millions)

Planned spending   $1,148.8
Total authorities $1,183.9
Actual spending $1,058.6

Explanation of resources used: Total authorities included planned spending of $1,148.8 million plus $35.1 million provided through Supplementary Estimates and additional statutory requirements – including employee benefit plans – for a total of $1,183.9 million.

Actual expenditures were lower than total authorities by $125.3 million. This consists of $84.0 million in funding approved for future years through reprofiling. The balance of the reduced requirements ($41.3 million) was mainly due to $21 million in operating lapses identified to be carried forward to the next fiscal year, lower than planned expenditures in Settlement programs and other general operating lapses.

Departmental Priorities

CIC established the following three priorities to guide the Department’s work in 2006-2007:

1. Implementing an integrated policy framework
2. Improving client service
3. Building the workforce of the future

CIC’s Strategic Outcomes and Program Activities

CIC’s three strategic outcomes describe the long term-results that the Department’s programs are designed to achieve. The Department’s Program Activity Architecture (PAA) is a framework that provides an inventory of the Department’s programs and activities and describes their linkages to the three strategic outcomes. The PAA also provides an enduring foundation for financial and performance reporting to Parliament.

Alignment of CIC’s Strategic Outcomes with Government of Canada Outcomes

The following table shows CIC’s program activities, their linkages to the strategic outcomes and how they align with Government of Canada outcomes. [note 5]

Government of Canada
CIC’s Strategic Outcomes CIC’s Program Activities


Strong economic growth

1. Maximum contribution to Canada’s economic, social and cultural development from migration

1. Immigration Program

2. Temporary Resident Program


A safe and secure world through international cooperation

2. Reflection of Canadian values and interests in the management of international migration, including refugee protection

3. Canada’s Role in International Migration and Protection

4. Refugee Program


Diverse society that promotes linguistic duality and social inclusion

3. Successful integration of newcomers and promotion of Canadian citizenship

5. Integration Program

6. Citizenship Program

A change in CIC’s PAA was announced in February 2006 and was approved by the Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS) on June 22, 2006. The change reflected the transfer of responsibility, including funding, for the Toronto Waterfront Revitalization Initiative (TWRI) to the TBS and subsequently to Environment Canada. Funding allocations across CIC’s other strategic outcomes and program activities, as illustrated in Section 2 below, were not affected.

Performance Status Based on Program Activity Architecture [note 6]

Program Activity Expected Result
* Indicator
(in $millions)
(in $millions)
Strategic Outcome 1:
Maximum contribution to Canada’s economic, social and cultural development from migration
1. Immigration Program Contribution, through the immigration program, to Canada’s economic, social and cultural development
* Achievement of Immigration Plan
Successfully met
2. Temporary Resident Program Contribution, through the temporary residents program, to Canada’s economic, social and cultural development
* Number of Temporary Residents (processed on demand)
Exceeded expectations
Strategic Outcome 2:
Reflection of Canadian values and interests in the management of international migration, including refugee protection
3. Canada’s Role in International Migration and Protection Canada influences the international agenda on migration and protection
* Influence on international migration and protection policies
Successfully met
4. Refugee Program Maintenance of Canada’s humanitarian tradition with respect to refugees and persons in need of protection
* Achievement of protected persons levels of the Immigration Plan
Successfully met
Strategic Outcome 3:
Successful integration of newcomers and promotion of Canadian citizenship
5. Integration Program Successful integration of newcomers into Canadian society within a
reasonable time frame; Newcomers contribute to the economic, social and cultural development needs of Canada
* Labour market integration
Successfully met
6. Citizenship Program Accordance of full participation in Canadian society to eligible
permanent residents;
Contribution to Canada’s economic, social and cultural development
* Attitudes towards Canadian citizenship
Successfully met

Operating Context

An ever-changing world continues to present Canada’s immigration and citizenship program with new issues and challenges associated with an evolving global economy, and shifting demographic patterns and geopolitical trends.

Factors that have influenced migration in recent decades include population growth, market globalization, advances in communication technology, ease of transportation, political, economic and social conditions, regional conflicts, and environmental degradation and natural disasters. Canada has one of the highest per capita rates of permanent immigration in the world — roughly 0.7 percent annually in recent years — and has welcomed 3.5 million immigrants in the last 15 years.

The growth of the economy depends essentially on two factors: the share of the population that is working and the productivity of the workforce. According to Statistics Canada’s most recent demographic projections, Canada’s population should continue to grow between now and 2056, though its growth will gradually slow. Based on current trends, the working age population, which determines the size of the labour force, will grow more and more slowly until 2020, remain steady for a decade, and then resume growing. The percentage of the population that is working age, however, will decline steadily from approximately 70 percent now to about 60 percent in the 2030s. An increase in either birth rate or immigration would likely expand the size of the labour force but would have only a marginal influence on participation rates in the short or medium term.

Immigration has largely defined what Canada is today and has been a sustaining feature of Canada’s history. It will continue to play a key role in building the Canada of tomorrow and in supporting our economic and social objectives by helping to meet future labour market and community needs. The world is faced with a shortage of skilled labour and Canada is in competition with other industrialized countries for qualified workers. Some occupations, sectors, industries, and regions have experienced shortages of skilled workers in recent years. It is therefore important that Canada make the most of everyone’s skills, including those of newcomers. The Government of Canada has proposed to work with provincial and territorial partners to put in place a fair process for foreign credential assessment. It must also continue to develop its ability to attract and retain immigrants through proactive recruitment and effective integration and family reunification programs.

The globalization of markets, communications and travel has also resulted in a corresponding increase in risks. Ease of travel means that epidemics of diseases such as SARS and avian influenza can rapidly spread across the world if they are not managed effectively. Political conflict and civil strife in some parts of the world can also have widespread ramifications and undermine our collective sense of security. A key challenge for Canada is to strike the right balance between facilitating the entry of foreign nationals who have the potential to contribute to our economic, social and cultural life and protecting the health, safety and security of Canadians. CIC continues to work with its partners to fulfil its role in identifying applicants who could pose security, safety or health risks to Canada in order to ensure that the benefits of a more responsive immigration system are not undermined.

In line with a longstanding humanitarian tradition, each year Canada offers safe haven to many displaced and persecuted people. A key challenge is to ensure that our refugee protection system is fair, efficient and consistent with Canadian values such as respect for human rights, equality, fairness, peace and the rule of law.

CIC carries out its work on immigration, integration and citizenship issues in close collaboration with a number of partners: other government departments, provincial, territorial and municipal governments, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and employers. Other government departments such as the CBSA, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) are key to managing the business of bringing people to Canada, particularly in assisting CIC with its security and screening role. The provinces and territories, municipal governments, NGOs, and employers are instrumental in managing the settlement of newcomers once they arrive. The Department works in concert with other government departments (principally Canadian Heritage, Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT), Justice and Public Safety) to promote Canadian citizenship and civic practice, and to develop a shared understanding of the rights and responsibilities of citizenship in a context of deepening diversity.

CIC must be aware that, increasingly, citizenship, immigration and integration policies will have to be developed with a global context in mind.

It is a challenging environment. Getting services to the right people, at the right time and place, is CIC’s goal. In order to achieve that goal, the Department must develop a fully integrated approach to policy development, program design and service delivery that will attract, retain and integrate immigrants, provide refugee protection and modernize citizenship.

To support its Strategic Outcomes, CIC has focused on three priority areas in 2006-2007:

  • Implementing an integrated policy framework;
  • Improving client service; and
  • Building the workforce of the future.

Departmental Priorities

Priority 1: Implementing an Integrated Policy Framework

The integrated policy framework supports all three of the Department’s strategic outcomes by:

  • Providing a strategic roadmap to ensure all CIC programs and policies work together to serve Canada’s interests and fulfil our policy objectives to contribute to generating wealth and building Canada’s economy, sustaining strong communities and supporting Canada’s role in protecting those most in need;
  • Facilitating better coordination among partners and other stakeholders;
  • Building on existing capacities and mechanisms for sharing jurisdictional responsibility for immigration;
  • Providing ongoing mechanisms to share relevant information and to better direct that information into the policy and program development process;
  • Positioning Canada to more effectively respond to future challenges and take advantage of global economic and social conditions that affect migration, and domestic conditions that affect the integration and settlement of newcomers;
  • Modernizing our client service model and addressing the challenges in the current delivery system; and
  • Laying out a path to provide the sustainable investments needed.

The successful implementation of an integrated framework will require working in close partnership with other Government of Canada departments, provinces/territories and other key players such as communities, employers, and non-governmental organizations. Ongoing consultations with a range of stakeholders are defining the challenges in the immigration and citizenship system and ensuring support for future directions.

Over the past year, efforts have been devoted to improving labour market responsiveness, addressing key issues such as foreign adoptions and citizenship loss and acquisition, and developing sufficient supports for settlement and integration. Over the next year, broad engagement will continue to advance the integrated framework and help develop measures that will support its overall directions.

Priority 2: Improving Client Service

The decision to immigrate to Canada or to apply for citizenship is an important life decision. Both clients and CIC are better served when this decision is based on realistic, authoritative and timely information. People need to know about the opportunities, challenges and difficulties involved in immigrating, working and living in Canada and about the privileges and responsibilities of Canadian citizenship. Clients and the Department also benefit when immigration and citizenship application processing is simple, predictable and transparent.

While Canada’s immigration system provides a strong foundation upon which to build, there are challenges in the areas of application management and client service. Responding to these challenges will involve enhancing services to clients while maintaining the integrity of the system, improving public perception of the system and ensuring that Canada remains an attractive destination for skilled immigrants. The increasing number of applications, for both temporary and permanent residence, shows that Canada continues to be a destination of choice.

However, a high volume of permanent resident applications, which exceeds the government’s immigration targets and processing capacity, helped create a large inventory of applications. Whereas, CIC continued to provide priority processing of sponsored spouses and children and refugees, there has been a growing number of applicants in the skilled workers and parents and grandparents categories. Furthermore, a steady increase in temporary resident applications, which are not constrained by target levels, also stretched the Department’s processing capacity and resources. Inventories have continued to rise, putting pressure on program delivery and contributing to lengthy wait times that make it challenging to manage client expectations. While CIC is equipped to deliver on its annual immigration targets, it must manage applications under the Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) category within its existing resources. Since CIC is obligated to process all applications it receives, this could lead to an erosion of the capacity to deliver on its planned admission targets, given that TFW applications take priority over the processing of permanent resident visas. These pressures highlight the need to find the right balance between temporary and permanent streams of immigration.

In 2006, CIC adopted a comprehensive three-year framework for client service modernization aimed at improving immigration and citizenship service delivery. It focuses on improvements in six key areas: policy directions that support client service, program management, administrative measures, electronic services and tools, resources, and partner engagement. Significant progress has been made in all of these areas, and CIC is committed to continuing to provide quality information and services to meet clients’ evolving needs and expectations. In order to support that commitment, CIC developed and adopted “A Commitment to Client Service and Guiding Principles for service improvement,” a departmental service delivery strategy, based on the feedback from internal and external focus groups.

During 2006-2007 the focus has been on introducing program improvements, reducing processing times in a number of areas, making better use of the Internet and on-line services, simplifying application kits and processes, providing better information through CIC’s Call Centre and streamlining service delivery with partners. Improvements that have been implemented include the following:

  • The Off-Campus Work Permit Program, which allows international students attending public post-secondary educational institutions to work part-time off campus, was launched in April 2006.
  • TFW units were established in Vancouver and Calgary in September 2006, following on the success of the TFW unit established in Montreal in 2003. The TFW units provide advice to employers who plan to hire temporary foreign workers who are exempted from the labour market confirmation process. The units also prescreen supporting documents from employers to streamline the application process for these workers.
  • Average processing times for citizenship grants were reduced to 12 months (down from 15 to 18 months in previous years), and related inventories dropped to 185,000 (from 345,500), as of February 2007.
  • Despite significant growth in the volume of Temporary Resident applications abroad, 73 percent of all temporary worker applications were processed in 28 days or less with an approval rate of 91 percent, and 76 percent of all student applications were processed in 28 days or less with an approval rate of 77 percent.
  • The Right of Permanent Residence Fee was reduced by 50 percent (Budget 2006). As of February 2007, CIC had refunded about $40 million in fees to some 83,000 applicants.
  • Enhancements to on-line tools such as the Residence Calculator and Electronic Client Application Status (E-CAS) were completed. The improvements will make it easier for applicants to assess their residence eligibility before starting the citizenship application process and will give more applicants access to information about their applications.
  • The application process for most applicants in the economic classes was simplified. Clients are now required to submit supporting documentation only when the visa office is ready to assess their applications. The regulations and processing fees in effect on the date they submit their basic application forms will still apply.
  • Discussions with Service Canada were initiated regarding joint pilot projects to enhance service delivery and negotiations were launched for a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to allow faster validation of citizenship information for Social Insurance Number card applications. Two pilot projects initiated with Service Canada in Quebec in 2005-2006 were continued. They are testing ways to expand in-person services and strengthen CIC’s delivery network.

Service improvements are being introduced gradually to provide short-term solutions and ensure medium-term transformation. To ensure a smooth transition and continuity in service delivery, the sequence of changes will continue to be guided by client feedback, project feasibility, cost and operational requirements.

Priority 3: Building the Workforce of the Future

CIC employees are instrumental in building Canadian society. The policy, program and client service that they provide are critical to Canada’s economic, social and international success today and in the future. CIC recognizes the importance of employees to organizational success and the pivotal and critical link between employees, clients and, ultimately, public trust.

Emerging public sector research [note 7] shows a clear and unequivocal link between employees, citizens’/ clients’ service satisfaction and citizens’ trust in public institutions. CIC faces the same challenges as other organizations within and external to the Canadian Federal Public Service — we need to change the way business is done in order to better serve our clients and all Canadians. CIC is facing increased retirements and relatively high departure rates. This presents retention, recruitment and succession management challenges. It also presents learning and knowledge transfer challenges as we integrate a larger number of new employees than in the past.

In order to achieve planned results and support departmental priorities, in 2006-2007, CIC began developing strategies to foster employee satisfaction and commitment, and ensure that the Department continues to be an attractive employer. For example, CIC provides an effective conflict resolution system comprised of preventive and collaborative approaches to deal with workplace issues. A number of employee networks (Youth Network, Diversity Network, Middle Managers Network) have also been established whose members meet regularly to discuss and develop innovative means of enhancing the workplace and workforce.

In 2006-2007, CIC set up a Workforce Renewal Office to develop ongoing and sustainable solutions as we move forward. Research and employee engagement were undertaken in order to frame the priority and better understand the underlying factors and forces at play, and enhance awareness among employees and managers about the nature and extent of workforce related challenges facing CIC.

CIC also developed its first three-year Human Resource Strategy in 2006-2007 and began work in the following areas.

  • Strategic resourcing;
  • A representative and diverse workforce;
  • An enabling organizational culture;
  • Succession planning and leadership excellence; and
  • Competency acquisition and continuous learning.

Through CIC’s business planning process, all sectors of the Department committed to key activities in support of the “workforce of the future” priority. This was accomplished through sound HR planning that linked business directions [note 8] with future demographic issues, learning needs of employees, and recruitment, training and development strategies. Results from the 2005 Public Service Employee Survey and departmental turnover rates were reviewed in order to identify opportunities for workplace improvements and develop strategies.

Management Agenda

CIC remains committed to continuous improvement through the pursuit of excellence in management practices. CIC is recognized as a leading Department in this area, and will continue to identify and strengthen key management practices. As it further operationalizes the use of the Management Accountability Framework (MAF), CIC has taken steps to promote its use as the instrument of choice for monitoring its management practices.

CIC has made significant progress in the development, risk ranking, establishment of audit criteria, and ownership of departmental fundamental controls. We are now poised to pursue our validation of controls specific to this Department and will continue to work with the TBS in this regard. In order to support horizontal work among departments, CIC has been sharing its work with other interested departments.

CIC has implemented a business planning process that integrates business activities with strategic and operational human resources plans and focuses on key risks, and financial, information technology and accommodation requirements. Sector work plans at the Assistant Deputy Minister level now form the basis of CIC’s Corporate Business Plan, which spans three years of the Department’s strategic and ongoing agendas. The planning process involves cross-departmental training that promotes common understanding and practices as a means to improve business planning. As part of management accountability, in 2006-2007, CIC conducted a mid-year review of its plans to ensure that they were aligned with business results.

In 2006-2007, CIC used workshops and multi-level discussions to develop a corporate risk profile that identified key departmental risks. The profile emphasizes areas of accountability, periodic monitoring, and the ongoing review and adjustment of corporate risks.

At CIC, ethical leadership is a fundamental principle of accountability, and values and ethics are considered the underpinning of management accountability. The Deputy Minister clearly requested that senior executives consider actions to reinforce values and ethics in their performance plans for the year. The values and ethics support group was reinvigorated, interested staff received training, and an action and communications plan was developed.

CIC is on track to meet the requirements of the new TBS Policy on Internal Audit. In 2006-2007, the Department hired additional experienced auditors with professional designations and recruited a new external member for the Audit Committee. It also implemented an Audit Committee Secretariat to support the activities of the Audit Committee. Internal Audit Branch finalized a Risk-based Audit Plan for 2007-2010. A preliminary Internal Audit Quality Assessment review was performed and results were presented to the Audit Committee. CIC will continue its systematic review of control and accountability processes.

Critical Partnerships

The successful management of Canada’s immigration program depends on ongoing cooperation with a wide range of partners. CIC works with many partners on both international and domestic immigration issues, but stronger relationships with an even broader variety of partners are needed to build Canada’s future.

Since jurisdiction over immigration is a shared responsibility, effective collaboration between the federal government and the provinces and territories is essential to the successful management of the immigration program. For this reason, provincial and territorial governments are CIC’s primary partners. Our shared goal is to make immigration programs responsive to the unique economic, social and labour market needs of each province and territory.

CIC has signed framework agreements for cooperation on immigration with eight provinces and territories, as well as Provincial Nominee agreements with 10 jurisdictions. [note 9] The Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) provides provinces and territories with the authority to nominate individuals as permanent residents to address specific labour market and economic development needs.

The Canada-Quebec Accord is the most comprehensive bilateral agreement on immigration in that it gives Quebec full responsibility for selecting its immigrants (with the exception of the members of the family class and refugees whose status is determined in Canada) and for providing settlement and integration services to newcomers, as well as the authority to set its own annual immigration targets. CIC continued to work very closely with Quebec in managing and coordinating this immigration partnership throughout the year.

The year 2006-2007 saw the development of new framework agreements and the renewal of others. A first-ever comprehensive agreement with Alberta was signed in May 2007. To meet Alberta’s growing demand for labour, the agreement removed the limit on the number of immigrants that can be nominated through the PNP and announced the intention to develop an annex to facilitate the entry of temporary foreign workers. The Provincial Nominee agreement with Newfoundland and Labrador was renewed during the year, coming into force in November 2006.

Also, in September 2006, a MOU was signed by the federal government, the Ontario government, and the City of Toronto. This marks the first time that collaboration has been established between all three levels of government in immigration matters. The MOU focuses on improving immigrant outcomes in areas such as access to employment, services, and educational and training opportunities, as well as citizenship and civic engagement.

Multilateral meetings are increasingly being used to discuss common approaches and concerns with respect to immigration issues and for sharing best practices. During 2006-2007, CIC undertook two sets of consultations with provincial and territorial counterparts regarding the allocation and use of new settlement funding. In a separate exercise, a joint federal-provincial working group planned and launched the first ever consultations with stakeholders across the country on the development of a multi-year plan on immigration levels. At the ministerial level, discussions were held on immigration levels planning, labour market needs, foreign credential recognition, the integration of immigrants into Canadian communities and long-term settlement funding.

CIC works closely with the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB) [note 10] on issues relating to the management of the refugee and immigration portfolio. The IRB is an independent administrative tribunal that adjudicates immigration inadmissibility, detention, appeals and refugee protection claims made within Canada. While the independence of the IRB and its decision makers is always maintained, there is close collaboration with CIC on policy and program issues.

CIC and the CBSA share responsibility for administering IRPA and support each other in carrying out their respective functions. With support from the CBSA and security agencies, CIC screens immigrants and temporary residents, assists with immigrant settlement and integration, and offers Canada’s protection to refugees and those in refugee-like situations. CIC supports the CBSA in managing and running Canada’s ports of entry. CIC provides information and other support to build intelligence to prevent inadmissible persons from reaching Canada and to detect persons who are in Canada but in contravention of IRPA. In March 2006, CIC and the CBSA formalized their close partnership through an MOU that defines how the two organizations work together to deliver all aspects of the immigration and refugee protection programs. As the MOU is implemented, CIC will continue to work closely with the CBSA to support the removal of inadmissible persons and to investigate the use of biometrics and other technologies in order to strengthen client identification and document and program integrity.

In Canada and overseas, CIC delivers its programs in collaboration with DFAIT, Public Safety Canada and other key agencies involved in managing access to Canada and protecting Canadian society. These agencies include the CBSA, the RCMP and CSIS, which work to ensure public safety. They also include Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), which work with CIC on immigrant health issues. CIC also works with Human Resources and Social Development Canada (HRSDC) on several files, including the Temporary Foreign Worker Program and the Foreign Credential Referral Office, as well as with Canadian Heritage on citizenship promotion activities and on Canada’s Action Plan Against Racism. Finally, CIC works with the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) to respond to humanitarian needs and increase international dialogue on migration and development.

Given the complexities of international migration management, there are few areas of policy and program interest where Canada can act alone. CIC has a number of key ongoing bilateral, regional and multilateral relationships, which are important vehicles for advancing Canadian objectives. CIC remains focused on asserting Canada’s role in international migration and protection. It is helping to set the international refugee protection agenda through regular sessions of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Working Group on Resettlement and its Executive Committee. It is also working with other Member States to develop strategic directions for the International Organization for Migration. CIC also actively participates in fora such as the Inter-Governmental Consultations on Asylum, Refugees and Migration Policies, the Four Country Conference, and the Regional Conference on Migration (Puebla Process). The Department is working with other states to influence the organization of the non-binding, states-led Global Forum on Migration and Development. CIC also represents Canada on migration matters at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

Canada maintains important relationships with a number of other countries with an interest in migration and CIC fosters key bilateral and regional ties. In the North American context, CIC helps to facilitate the movement of workers under the North American Free Trade Agreement as well as under specific seasonal agricultural worker agreements with Mexico and several Caribbean countries. CIC is committed to shared border initiatives with the United States, including the Security and Prosperity Partnership.

CIC also works closely with a wide range of stakeholders, including employers, service provider organizations (SPOs) and various interest groups. CIC will continue to foster these relationships and encourage stakeholders to take on greater partnership responsibilities with respect to the Immigration Program.