In a bid to bolster its thriving digital landscape, Canada has unveiled a groundbreaking tech talent strategy that introduces innovative immigration pathways to entice foreign tech experts into the country.
The announcement, made by Sean Fraser, the Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship, during the recent Collision 2023 event, signals Canada’s commitment to solidify its position as a global leader in emerging technologies, News About Nigeria reports.
The centerpiece of the strategy is the introduction of an “innovation stream” that offers highly skilled professionals in select high-demand occupations open work permits for up to five years.
Furthermore, the program also includes employer-specific work permits for the same duration, benefiting professionals employed by companies that are actively driving technological advancements.
Canada’s appeal as a destination for immigrant entrepreneurs has received a resounding endorsement with the country being ranked as the top choice, according to a 2023 report by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.
This reaffirms Canada’s reputation as an attractive location for individuals seeking new opportunities and reinforces its commitment to fostering innovation and growth through immigration.
The new immigration pathways extend their reach to holders of the H-1B specialty occupation visa in the United States, providing them with opportunities to apply for Canadian work permits, study permits, and work permits for accompanying family members.
The Canadian work permit for H-1B visa holders will be available starting from July 16 and will remain open for one year or until Immigration, Refugee, and Citizenship Canada receives 10,000 applications. Notably, the application cap will only consider principal applicants and not their accompanying family members.
Minister Fraser expressed his enthusiasm for the immigration goals, highlighting the strategic importance of attracting newcomers who can contribute to Canada’s position as a global leader in emerging technologies.
The development of the tech talent strategy involved close collaboration with the tech, start-up, and business communities, which provided valuable insights.
Canada’s fast and flexible approach to immigration, widely supported by Canadians, is seen as a significant advantage in attracting global talent.