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Canada needs nearly 164K new Red Seal tradespeople by 2025: CAF-FCA report


Canada needs nearly 164,000 new journeypersons to meet the demand for Red Seal trades by 2025, according to a new report by the Canadian Apprenticeship Forum (CAF-FCA).

The labour market information report, “Apprentice Demand in Red Seal Trades,” draws together apprenticeship trends data and projections to provide an assessment of the country’s demand and supply for trade certifications.

The 2021 report examines the demand for specific occupations and is concentrated in fifteen Red Seal trades. Nationally, industrial mechanic (millwright), boilermaker, bricklayer and welder are the trades with the highest demand.

The CAF-FCA analysis takes into consideration key apprenticeship system characteristics including sensitivity to economic cycles and completion rates.

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The demand projections go beyond the skilled trades and includes other related occupations such as supervisor, project manager and safety officer providing a more comprehensive outlook of the demand for journeypersons in the Canadian labour market.

Over the five-year period from 2021 to 2025, an estimated 163,785 new journeypersons will be required to sustain workforce certification levels across 56 Red Seal trades in Canada.

Canada will need a total of 375,026 apprentices to meet the anticipated demand.

“Offering meaningful training opportunities to apprentices and helping them complete is vital to meeting the anticipated demand. By encouraging employers to hire apprentices and apply training best practices, we can ensure the skilled trades workforce is ready to fill the gaps created by retiring journeypersons,” says France Daviault, CAF-FCA executive director, in a statement.

The following registration targets are estimates in the report providing insight into demand across provinces and regions:

Alberta: 75,467
Atlantic Canada: 23,966
BC: 83,277
Manitoba: 13,914
Ontario: 148,988
Quebec: 21,254
Saskatchewan: 8,160

Demand varies by region and CAF-FCA has also published dedicated reports for Alberta, Atlantic Canada, British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario, Québec and Saskatchewan.

Despite the current slowing of Canada’s resource sector, demand for apprentices in the labour market remains, driven by journeypersons who are retiring and leaving the workforce.

Supply risk may increase over the near term depending on the severity of the decline in new registrations caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. CAF-FCA will analyze in further detail the impact of COVID-19 on the skilled trades as Statistics Canada 2020 and 2021 data sets become available.

The 2021 Apprentice Demand reports are now available at caf-fca.org.