Unveiling the Immigrant Investor Venture Capital Pilot Program

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New Immigrant Investor Pilot Program

CIC announced that Canada will launch a pilot program in January 2015, to attract experienced business persons who can actively invest in Canadian economy, stimulating innovation, economic growth and job creation.

Immigrant Investors will be required to meet certain program eligibility criteria such as language and education level, proven business or investment experience, as well as an investment of $2 million for a period of 15 years and having a net worth of $10 million. Immigrant investors who are selected will be required to obtain a due diligence report from a designated service provider in order to prove that their net worth of at least $10 million has been obtained from lawful, profit-making business activities.

This will ensure that the applicants will have a strong impact in the Canadian economy, and that those admitted for permanent residence will be well prepared to integrate into Canadian business landscape and community. The investments will be gathered into the Immigrant Investor Venture Capital Fund, and will be used to seed innovative Canadian start-ups with high growth potential.

This new Immigrant Investor Capital Pilot Program will begin accepting application in late January in the year of 2015, and will provide a pathway to permanent residence for approximately 50 immigrant investors and their families.

The Immigrant Investor Venture Capital Pilot Program is designed to fulfill the government of Canada’s commitment in Economic Action Plan 2014 to create a more focused and effective pilot program that will ensure that immigrants who come to Canada deliver meaningful benefits to Canadian economy, as part of the transformational changes in order to build a fast & flexible economic immigration system.

The Government of Canada ended the previous Immigrant Investor Program and the Entrepreneur Program as neither program was determined to have contributed to Canada’s economic growth. Research indicated that immigrant investors under the previous programs were less likely than other immigrants to stay in Canada over the medium to long term. By requiring a non-guaranteed investment of $2 million and including more selection criteria for skills and abilities, the Immigrant Investor Venture Capital Pilot Program will test a new approach to immigrant investor program in Canada.

“Our Government is focused on building an immigration system that meets Canada’s economic and labour market needs. Through the launch of this pilot program, we are attracting investors who can make a significant investment and who have the education and proven business or investment experience necessary to achieve success in Canada. As we move forward, our Government will continue to ensure that our economic immigration programs provide a direct benefit to Canada and contribute to long-term prosperity and economic growth.”

 — Chris Alexander, Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration Minister

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Parent and Grandparent Program Re-Opening January 2, 2015

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Parent and Grandparent program re-opening January 2, 2015

Citizenship and Immigration Canada has announced that the Parent and Grandparent Program (PGP) will re-open in January 2, 2015, with similar admission criteria and application cap as last year. The Parent and Grandparent Program (PGP) is designed for Canadian citizens and permanent residents to bring their foreign parents and grandparents to Canada as Permanent Residents.

CIC will accept applications until the 5,000 cap of complete applications has been reached. the intake of new applications to sponsor parents and grandparents starting January 2, 2015, at 8:00 a.m. Eastern standard time (EST). Applications must be individually packaged. All applications received after the cap has been reached will be returned to the applicant.Applications received before January 2, 2015 will not be accepted and will be returned to the applicant.

Basic Requirements for sponsor:

  • Be a Canadian citizen or Permanent Resident;
  • Be 18 years of age or older;
  • Exceed the minimum necessary income level for this program by submitting notices of assessment issued by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) in support of their sponsorship. Sponsors must also demonstrate they have met the minimum necessary income level for three consecutive years. If married or in a common-law relationship, the income of both persons can be included;
  • The sponsor must sign an undertaking to repay any provincial social assistance benefits paid to the sponsor and accompanying family member(s), if any, for a period of 20 years, if necessary. If the sponsor resides in Quebec, an additional ‘undertaking’ must be signed.

Individuals willing to bring their parents and /or grandparents to Canada, can also do so through the Super Visa Program.

For more details about the parent and grandparent program (PGP), please see: Family Sponsorship -Parent and Grandparent Program (PGP)


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Open Work Permit for Spouses and common-law partners living in Canada

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Canada launches pilot program for spouses waiting for permanent residency

December 22, 2014, Citizenship and Immigration Canada launched a one-year pilot program to issue open work permits for eligible spouses or common-law partners who are applying for permanent residency from inside Canada, before the decision on their PR application is made.

Applicants who have already submitted an inside Canada spousal sponsorship application can now submit an open work permit application to CIC. New inside Canada spousal sponsorship applicants can submit their open work permit application along with their PR application package to CIC’s case processing centre in Mississauga. A standard medical exam will be required for the Work Permit Application.

Before this pilot program, Canada’s Open Work Permit only issues to Spousal Sponsorship Applicant from outside Canada. Open Work Permit for Spouses and common-law partners living in Canada allows applicants to work for any employer for a specified period of time while their permanent residence applications are processed. The open work permit would also allow the applicants to receive provincial health coverage while waiting for the decision on their permanent residence applications.

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Getting Ready for Express Entry

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Getting Ready to Launch Express Entry

On December 1, 2014, Citizenship and Immigration Canada Minister, Chris Alexander, announced that the government is one month away from launching the Express Entry – Canada’s new immigration recruitment system. The system will launch at 12 noon EST January 1st, 2015. The first draw for an invitation to apply is scheduled for the last week of January.

The Minister promises the Express Entry will result in faster processing and will allow the Government more flexibility and adaptability when responding to Canada’s changing labour market needs. Those with valid job offers or provincial/territorial nominations will be picked first.

How Express Entry Works

Express Entry will manage Canada’s Permanent Residence applications under the following Economic Immigration Programs:

Provinces and territories will also be able to recruit candidates from the Express Entry system for a portion of the Provincial Nominee Programs to meet local labour market needs.

The Express Entry System has two steps:

Step 1 – Potential Candidates to Complete an Online Profile

  • Complete a Language Test – In order to create a profile, candidates must provide their language test results from a recognized test – IELTS, CELPIP or TEF.  Candidates cannot create a profile without having their individual test information.
  • Have your Education Assessed – Candidates who completed their education overseas must have it assessed by a recognized education assessment body. Only those with at least one year of skilled Canadian Experience in the past three years, OR whose experience is in a skilled trade, are exempt from providing this report.
  • Complete an Online Express Entry Profile  – When candidates have their language test results and their education credential assessment (if required), they can now create a Express Entry Profile. This is a secure form that the candidates will use to provide information about their skills, work experience, language ability, education and other details that will help CIC to assess them. Those who meet the criteria of one of the immigration programs listed above will be accepted into a pool of candidates.

If a candidate does not already have a job offer supported by a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) (if applicable), or a nomination from a province or territory, by the time of the submission of the Express Entry profile, the candidate will need to register with Employment and Social Development Canada’s (ESDC) Job Bank. The Job Bank will help connect Express Entry candidates with qualified employers across Canada.

Step 2 – The Highest-Ranked Candidates in the Pool Will Be Invited to Apply for Permanent Residence

  • Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) – A points-based system will be used to score and assess a candidate’s profile and rank them in the Express Entry Pool. Express Entry candidates will be given a score out of 1200, based on the four parts of the CRS formula:
    1. Skills and experience factors (key to economic success for immigrants once in Canada)
    2. Spouse factors (such as language skills and education)
    3. Skills transferability (including education and work experience – factors that when combined, result in better chances of being employed, and higher earnings)
    4. Additional points for those with a nomination from a province or territory or a valid job offer.
  •  Invitation To Apply (ITA) – Candidates have 60 days to submit an online application for permanent residency after receiving the ITA.

What Happens if a Candidate Does Not Get an Invitation to Apply?

The Express Entry Profile can stay in the pool for up to 12 months. If candidates do not get an Invitation to Apply for permanent residence within 12 months of submitting an Express Entry profile, they may submit a new profile. If they still meet the criteria, they will be eligible to re-enter the pool. This will prevent backlogs and ensure quick processing times.

Getting Ready For Express Entry

If you are wanting to apply under Canada’s new immigration recruitment system in the beginning of 2015, here are some suggestions to get ready for Express Entry.

  • You will need to take a language test. According to the new Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), candidates’ language ability will be one of the most important factors in order to rank higher in the pool. CIC will use your language test results to see whether you are eligible to immigrate to Canada under one of the immigration programs under the Express Entry. You will need to meet certain Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) in order to gain more point in CRS. You can click here to see how CLB works
  • If your education experience are from outside Canada, you may need to have your educational credentials assessed against Canadian Standards
  • You will need to understand the Skill Type/Occupation of your work experience, as well as what do you plan to do in Canada. to find out the details of your skill type. Jobs in Canada are classified by what are called National Occupational Classification (NOC) codes, which are divided by skill level and skill type.

Quick Facts to Know About Express Entry

  • No Eligible Occupation List: As of January 1, 2015, the eligibility for Express Entry will not include a list of eligible occupations. Candidates will need to demonstrate that they have worked at least one year in a skilled occupation within the past 10 years.
  • Fully Electronic Processing System: The entire Express Entry process, including steps one and two, will be conducted online.
  • Language Proficiency required prior to entering the pool: Candidates will have to demonstrate proficiency in an official language of Canada, either English or French, in order to enter the Express Entry pool. Candidates will not be able to enter the Express Entry pool without submitting language test results that meet the eligibility requirements for one of the federal economic immigration programs.
  • Profiles in the Express Entry Pool are editable: News showing that candidates can update their profiles in the pool. This means that candidates will be able to maneuver within the Comprehensive Ranking System if they gain additional points
  • Invited applicants have 60 days to file a complete application: If an applicant gets an invitation to apply, but fails to submit a complete immigration application and all supporting documents, the applicant will not have a second opportunity to file the an application under the same invitation to apply.

“With the launch of Express Entry in January, our Government will build on our strong and proven record of helping immigrants succeed, and helping Canada’s economy thrive. Starting January 1st, we will be able to select the top economic immigrants who will contribute to our economy, labour market and communities.”

 – Chris Alexander, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Canada


For more information about the Express Entry and to learn how we can help, please contact us.

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