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Immigration to Canada
Applying for a Canadian visa offers an exciting opportunity to live and work in Canada, one of the world's most dynamic and rewarding countries. Immigration in Canada constitutes an ever-growing section of society and the country has been rated as the # 1 place to live four times in the past decade by the United Nations Human Development Index.
Living and Working In Canada Permanently
For those wishing to live and work in the country on a permanent basis, a range of options exist which confer immediate permanent residency status. The Canada immigration service, Citizenship and Immigration in Canada or CIC allows permanent residents to apply for Canadian citizenship following satisfaction of the three-year residency obligation requirement.
Canadian Business Visas
One of the most popular routes for Immigration to Canada is the Federal skilled worker class visa, which seeks to attract immigrants with desirable business skills and work experience who will contribute to and further the economy. This type of work visa for Canada much like the Highly Skilled Migrant Programme, HSMP in the UK, functions on a points based system examining factors such as age, work experience, education and a migrant's ability to adapt easily. A successful application for a skilled worker visa will give a candidate the status of a permanent resident in Canada with the same rights as Canadian citizens except the right to vote. It will also afford them complete freedom to work in the country as they see fit.
For applicants who do not meet the points threshold there are still a range of business-based options. In Canada visa applications for permanent residence are welcomed from potential migrants with the capital, ability and intention to set up businesses in the country. Canadian Business Class Immigration, often known as the Business Immigration Program offers opportunities in three categories for Investors, Entrepreneurs and those wishing to become self employed.
Canadian Working Visa Under the Entrepreneur Program
Candidates who apply for a Canadian working visa under the Entrepreneur program will need to purchase or invest in a commercial venture, which will contribute to the economy and create jobs for permanent Canadian residents or citizens outside the applicant and their family. Applicants for the self employed route must demonstrate the ability and intention to purchase or start a business which will provide employment for the applicant and will make a significant contribution to the economy or cultural life of the country. Farmers, artists, professional athletes and musicians fit into this category.
The immigrant Investor Programme
Those wishing to invest in the economy rather than establishing a business may pursue the Immigrant Investor Program. In this case applicants must make a minimum investment of $400,000 (CDN) to a government or province approved venture. They must also be able to demonstrate that they have successfully owned or operated a business, and have amassed a net worth of $800,000 (CDN) or more.
Applicants may also wish to explore the Provincial Nomination program, which allows A province or employer, depending on the province selected, to nominate a limited amount of candidates and apply to the provincial government for sponsorship. A job offer under this route is based upon the candidate's skills.
Unlike working permits, the provincial nomination scheme is a permanent immigration service. In addition, it is important to note that applicants are restricted to working in the province to which the submission was made.
An application for a Canadian family Visa in which existing permanent Canadian residents or citizens can sponsor their foreign national relatives for an agreed time (between 3 and 10 years) in the country until they are able to establish themselves.
In Canada visa requirements for family immigrants are not subject to the points system and any Canadian permanent resident of 18 years or more with sufficient qualifying income can sponsor a relative in this way. Sponsoring relatives in this way is usually the quickest route to achieving permanent residency in Canada; it allows for spouse immigration and fiance immigration and permits parents and dependent children under 18 years of age to enter the country.
Working on a Temporary Basis
Aside of the various options for permanent immigration Canada also offers a number of routes to visit or work in the country on a temporary basis.
Canadian Work permits are issued when candidates have a specific job offer on a temporary basis from a sponsoring company. A Canadian Work permit depends upon you working solely for the employer making the offer and will only be issued for a position which could not be filled by a Canadian citizen.
Studying in Canada
In most cases, students wishing to study in Canada will need to obtain a Canadian student visa although in some circumstances such as those candidates studying for less than six months, a Canadian study visa will not be required. A study permit for Canada must be applied for as soon as an applicant receives the letter of acceptance from the educational institution. Study permits allow applicants to work part time on campus and seek a renewal from within the country should they decide to continue studying.
Tourism - Applying for a Canadian Visit Visa
Canadian Visit visas or Tourist visas for Canada allow you to visit for up to six months. Working under any of the following Canadian Tourist visa categories is strictly prohibited, and in some cases, depending on your home country you may need to obtain a Temporary Resident visa as well.
Single Entry Canada Visitor Visa
This category allows an applicant to visit the nation once only, for a maximum duration of 6 months. However, you can seek an extension at least 30 days before expiry of the original document.
Multiple Entry Canada Visiting visa
This category allows an applicant to enter and depart the country on several occasions during and up to its period of validity.
Transit Canada Visitor Visa
If you are coming from a country which requires visiting visas to enter Canadian territory, this category becomes necessary when you visit en route to another destination. In Canada visas of this kind allow you to spend no more than 48 hours in the country.
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