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December 11, 2023

The Honourable Marc Miller
Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
K1A 0A6

Via email:

Dear Minister Miller,

The Fredericton Chamber of Commerce writes to you today to request you maintain the lifting of the 20-hour-per-week cap on the number of hours that eligible post-secondary students are allowed to work off-campus while class is in session.

The Fredericton Chamber of Commerce has been very active on this file in recent years and authored the 2021 Canadian Chamber of Commerce Policy Resolution entitled “Attracting and Retaining More International Students through Canadian Work Experience”[1]. Within this policy resolution, the second recommendation requests that the Government of Canada, “Make permanent and remove sectoral/industry restrictions for the temporary, pandemic-related measures that allows international students to work more than 20 hours per week off-campus.” This position is strongly supported by the national chamber network as the resolution was passed by 100% of delegates of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce policy conference.

As jurisdictions across Canada are searching for ways to attract and retain more international students, to grow our population, and increase the number of skilled workers, this issue is no less urgent now in 2023 and remains a priority for Fredericton, New Brunswick, and the whole of Canada. Making these connections in the local community while they attend a post-secondary institution will make it more likely to retain these students after graduation.

From our experience, retaining international students after graduation leads directly to starting businesses, creating jobs, filling skilled positions and those persons in turn becoming active members of our community. Considering the ongoing labor market dynamics and the essential role international students play in supporting local economies, we request your consideration in continuing the policy introduced last year to not cap international students working hours and give them the same employment opportunities as domestic students. The adjustment will not only continue to meet the needs of Canadian employers but will also provide the over 500,000 international students already in Canada with the means to cover their living expenses in a challenging economic environment.


Morgan Peters                                                 

Chief Executive Officer       

cc: Jenica Atwin, MP, Fredericton; Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Indigenous


cc: Perrin Beatty, President & CEO, Canadian Chamber of Commerce 

cc: Hon. Arlene Dunn, Minister, Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour, Government 

      of New Brunswick

[1] “Attracting and Retaining More International Students through Canadian Work Experience“ Policy Resolutions, 2021, Canadian Chamber  of Commerce, , 59.

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