Canada – New Immigration Policies Set Forth for 2017

Canada has released information detailing substantial changes that effect immigration this week.

Within its Fall Economic Statement , released on November 1, 2016, the Canadian government proposes to launch a Global Skills Strategy to set a two-week standard for processing visas and work permits for global talent.  The initiative will support Canadian companies that need access to global talent to facilitate and accelerate investments that create jobs and growth.  It will also support global companies that make large investments to relocate to Canada, establish new or expand production, and create new Canadian jobs.

The government also plans to introduce a new work permit exemption for work less than 30 days in a year, or for brief academic stays, used to facilitate short term, inter-company work exchanges, study exchanges, or the entrance of temporary expert.

The plan also details the following:

  • To boost newcomers through Federal Skilled Worker Class, Federal Skilled Trades Class, and Canadian Experience Class by 23%; and
  • To welcome as many as 320,000 new immigrants over the calendar year of 2017.

The Canadian immigration authorities also announced intentions this week to raise the age of dependent children that may be included on an application to less than 22 years of age.  If approved, this will take effect in the fall of 2017.  Currently, children of a principal applicant are required to be less than 19 year of age to be considered a dependent on an application for Canadian residency.

This change reverts back to the maximum age of dependent children less than 22 years of age from June 2002 – July 2014.  Between those years, on average, 28% of all immigration applications approved included dependent children.  Of the 28% of dependent children, 11% were 19 years of age or older.