Recently, Canada has introduced some changes to the immigration pathways for international entrepreneurs. The Canadian government announced that the owner/operator category under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) will no longer be operational from April 1, 2021.
The Owner/Operator LMIA category authorized Canadian employers to hire foreign workers without meeting the advertising requirements of the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) for a work permit. These new changes will also affect the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). Canada will no longer accept applicants from the United Kingdom for this program beginning January 1, 2021.
If applicants from the UK want to apply for business immigration, they can apply under the new Canada-UK Trade Continuity Agreement which is expected to come into effect early this year. Until then, they will be required to apply for an LMIA or meet the eligibility criteria for an LMIA exemption.
Canada allows international entrepreneurs to apply for a work permit under some of its immigration pathways. Having a work permit allows the applicants to set up and establish their business and meet the terms set in their Business Performance Agreement to get permanent residency.
What Are the Options Available for International Entrepreneurs?
The Intra-Company Transfer is for international entrepreneurs who want to expand their existing business into Canada. This program is usually opted by multinational companies to set up their operations in Canada and move key staff members between their international branches, also known as Intra-Company Transferees.
This way entrepreneurs can divide their time between their overseas business and their Canadian branch, subsidiary or affiliate.
The new business must have a physical location and a business plan to hire at least 1 Canadian employee in the first year of operation. The new business must be related to the foreign business in terms of ownership and operation. The key staff member being moved to Canada must have been employed with the foreign business for at least 1 year in a senior managerial or executive position.