John McCallum, Canada’s Immigration Minister met with stakeholders in Calgary on Friday on the second Alberta stop on his tour to learn about immigration issues facing the country.

McCallum spoke with the media at the Harry Hays building on Friday morning and announced that there has been overwhelming support for more immigrants to enter Canada from everyone he’s spoken to so far.

“I was interested to hold these in Alberta because, as you know, Alberta’s economy is not in the greatest shape. So I was interested to hear what people’s attitudes would be towards immigration. I can tell you in this group this morning and also in Edmonton, there’s a strong consensus that they are in favour of more immigrants, not less immigrants.”

The federal government says that Canada’s aging population is creating a gap in the workforce and immigration is the key to growing the labour force.

Immigration will also be important for Canada when the economy rebounds and businesses are looking for workers to fill empty positions.

Nevertheless, the government does have a challenge because many immigrants don’t want to live in rural areas of Canada where their help is needed in the agriculture and manufacturing sectors.

McCallum said that Ottawa will do what it can, but businesses must step up to provide supports and incentives for immigrants to come to Canada and make a home in the communities where they are needed.

He told the media on Friday that of the hundreds of people he’s spoken to about the immigration issue, only two people have shared thoughts of a strong opposition.

In November, the government will set how many immigrants will be allowed into the country next year.

Ottawa is also working on a three year schedule to determine how many will be allowed into Calgary over a three year period.