Canada Alert – Global Skills Strategy Launched

The Global Skills Strategy was launched June 12, 2017, for a faster application processing available for companies employing foreign nationals.  The global stream will establish a two week standard for the processing of work permits and temporary resident visas (if applicable) for highly skilled workers.

The Canadian government has not released specific processing details that will applicable to the application of cases using the category.  As these details become available, FGI will share this advisory immediately.

The two categories introduced under the Global Talent stream are Category A and Category B.

Category A

Companies to be eligible as a Category A Employer, high growth companies with a need of highly skilled talent of foreign nationals, must first be recommended to the Global Talent Stream by a designated partner.

As of June 12, the following organizations have been designated as Global Talent Stream referral partners:

  • Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
  • BC Tech Association
  • Business Development Bank of Canada
  • Communitech Corporation
  • Council of Canadian Innovators
  • Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario
  • Global Affairs Canada’s Trade Commissioner Service
  • ICT Manitoba (ICTAM)
  • Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada – Accelerated Growth Service
  • MaRS Discovery District
  • National Research Council – Industrial Research Assistance Program
  • Ontario Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration
  • Ontario Ministry of Economic Growth and Development
  • VENN Innovation

Employers searching to hire highly skilled talent of foreign nationals under this category must ensure the applicant has unique and specialized talent, as well as a minimum of five years specialized experience.  The position must also be highly paid.

Category B

Companies searching to hire employees under Skills Shortage List, defined by the National Occupation Classification (NOC) Code, fall into Category B.

The below NOC codes have been identified as areas that have skills shortage in Canada.  The list may be updated periodically.

National Occupations Classification (NOC) CodeOccupation
0213Computer and information systems managers
2147Computer engineers (except software engineers and designers)
2171Information systems analysts and consultants
2172Database analysts and data administrators
2173Software engineers and designers
2174Computer programmers and interactive media developers
2175Web designers and developers
2241Electrical and electronics engineering technologists and technicians
2283Information systems testing technicians
5241Digital Media and Design (positions requiring a minimum of five years’ industry experience and specific skills only)

Employees hired under the Global Skills Strategy must be paid at the prevailing wage or higher.

Work Permit Exemptions

A new work permit exemption for highly-skilled workers will also be available, that applies to all NOC 0 and NOC A workers.  The eligible employees will be allowed one 15-day work permit-exempt stay in Canada every six months, or one 30-day work permit-exempt stay every 12 months.

Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) Stream

The Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) will be managing the LMIA stream to establish a processing time of 10 business days for foreign nationals whose employers have been approved to hire through the Global Talent Stream.

Employers must develop a Labour Market Benefits Plan that outlines the benefits the foreign national will bring to the Canadian work force.

Please note that this is general information only and not intended as advice on a specific matter. Please feel free to contact Fakhoury Global Immigration directly with questions exclusive to your situation.