February 12, 2013

Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) posted a January 24th announcement regarding the creation and implementation of a new Start-Up Visa Program to commence on April 1, 2013.

Why A New “Start-Up” Visa Category?

In August 2012, the Canadian Government and CIC joined together to announce major, comprehensive changes to Canada’s immigration system. “Our government has a plan for a faster, more flexible, responsive and secure immigration system that will better meet Canada’s economic needs while continuing to uphold our humanitarian commitments,” stated CIC’s Minister Jason Kenney. “With our changes, immigrants will see their lives improve, and Canadians will see the economy grow.”

As part of Canada’s goal overall goal to attract both entrepreneurial and highly-skilled migration, the CIC recently announced a new “Start-Up” Visa program designed to provide fast track permanent residency to attract dynamic entrepreneurs from around the world who will help Canada remain competitive in the global economy.

What is the “Start-Up” Visa Category?

The program will link qualified immigrant entrepreneurs with private sector organizations in Canada to help them navigate the Canadian business environment and obtain venture capital.

As a prerequisite to participating in the Program, foreign entrepreneurs will require the support of approved venture capital funds or business incubators. The full set of eligibility criteria is expected to be published in the spring of 2013 and the Program will open for applications on April 1, 2013.

The initial overview of this program can be found here:

http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/department/media/releases/2013/2013-01-24.asp

ACTION ITEMS FOR EMPLOYERS

While no action required from employers, it is worth noting that Canada is introducing supposedly the world’s “first-of-its-kind” the ability for entrepreneurial-minded foreign nationals to link up with angel investor networks to introduce competitive, new start-up growth in Canada.

Caveat Lector | Warning to Reader

This is provided as informational only and does not substitute for actual legal advice based on the specific circumstances of a matter. Readers are reminded that Immigration laws are fluid and can change a moment’s notice without any warning. Please reach out to your local Pro-Link GLOBAL specialist should you require any additional clarification. This alert was prepared by Glenn Faulk, Senior Manager, Knowledge Management. Pro-Link GLOBAL worked with our PLG | KGNM Correspondent Office in Canada to provide you this update.

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