Category Archives: Business Immigration

COVID-19 and Canadian Skilled Worker And Business Immigration

The global COVID-19 pandemic has brought about significant changes, including in the realm of immigration. For skilled workers and businesses, navigating the new challenges and uncertainties posed by the pandemic has been difficult.

But what exactly has been the impact of COVID-19 on immigration to Canada, and how has the Canadian government adapted to these changes?

In this article, we delve into these questions and examine the impact of COVID-19 on Canadian immigration for skilled workers and businesses, as well as the efforts made by the Canadian government to adapt to the situation.

Effects of COVID-19 on Skilled Workers

Skilled worker immigration has been one of the pillars of Canada’s immigration system for many years. The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted skilled worker immigration, both positively and negatively. Take a peek at some of those!

Immigration Processing Delays

One of the most significant impacts has been the slow-down processing times for immigration applications. According to data from Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), processing times have increased significantly due to the pandemic, with some applications taking several months to process.

This has created a great deal of uncertainty and frustration for many skilled workers who are waiting to immigrate to Canada.

Program Eligibility Changes

The eligibility criteria for several skilled worker immigration programs in Canada were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, including:

Federal Skilled Worker Program: The minimum Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score required for an invitation to apply for permanent residency was temporarily lowered in response to the pandemic.

Canadian Experience Class: Changes were made to the program to accommodate the impact of COVID-19 on work experience and language testing, including the temporary acceptance of online language tests.

Provincial Nominee Program: Some provinces and territories temporarily suspended or modified their nomination programs in response to the pandemic.

Atlantic Immigration Pilot: The pilot program temporarily adjusted its eligibility criteria in response to the pandemic, including changes to the requirements for job offers and the availability of language testing.

Quebec Skilled Worker Program: The program temporarily suspended the selection of new applications in response to the pandemic and later resumed with modified eligibility criteria.

Impacted Temporary Foreign Workers

The pandemic has also significantly impacted temporary foreign workers in Canada. The pandemic has decreased the number of skilled workers able to immigrate to Canada due to travel restrictions and reduced economic activity.

The country’s economy was heavily influenced, leading to job losses and concentrated working hours, especially in the tourism, hospitality, and retail sectors. Conference Board of Canada analyzes that the decline in immigration to Canada resulted in a loss of up to $16 billion in economic activity.

Many workers have been unable to return home due to travel restrictions and border closures.

Skilled workers in essential services, such as healthcare and construction, were in high demand and faced increased workloads, but those in non-essential services faced uncertainty and instability.

Besides, the pandemic has accelerated the shift towards remote work and digital technologies, leading to a greater demand for workers with digital skills and creating new job opportunities in industries such as technology, e-commerce, and telemedicine.

Additionally, some employers have had to lay off or reduce the hours of temporary foreign workers due to the economic impact of the pandemic. This has created a difficult situation for these workers, who may struggle to support themselves and their families.

Effects of COVID-19 on Canadian Businesses

Business immigration is also an essential part of Canada’s immigration system, and the pandemic has significantly impacted this area also.

Challenges In Sponsoring Foreign Workers

One of the biggest challenges businesses face is sponsoring foreign workers. With border closures and travel restrictions in place, many businesses need help to bring in the workers they need to continue operating.

This has created a great deal of uncertainty for many companies and has also harmed the Canadian economy.

 Decrease In International Business Travel

Another impact of the pandemic on business immigration has been the decrease in international business travel.

With many countries still imposing travel restrictions, it has become much more difficult for businesses to conduct international trade and build relationships with foreign partners. Many companies have suffered, and the overall economy has slowed down due to the pandemic.

Impact On Start-Up Visas For Entrepreneurs

The pandemic has also impacted the start-up visa program for entrepreneurs. This program allows entrepreneurs to immigrate to Canada and start their businesses.

However, the pandemic has made it more difficult for entrepreneurs to secure the necessary funding and support to launch their businesses. Because of this, it is more challenging for entrepreneurs to immigrate to Canada through the start-up visa program.

Adaptations and Initiatives by the Canadian Government

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Canadian government has implemented several adaptations and initiatives to support skilled workers and business immigration. Some of these include:

Virtual Processing: The implementation of virtual processing has allowed the Canadian immigration department (IRCC) to continue processing immigration applications, even while their offices are closed. This has helped to minimize the delays in processing times and has allowed skilled workers and businesses to continue their immigration journey to Canada.

Essential Worker Streams: The Canadian government has launched new immigration streams for virtual workers to support businesses critical to the economy and need to bring in workers to continue operations.

Extension of Validity for Immigration Documents: To minimize the disruption caused by the pandemic, the Canadian government has extended the validity of immigration documents for skilled workers and businesses. This has allowed them to continue their immigration process even if their physical documents have expired.

Prioritization of Pending Applications: The Canadian government has prioritized processing pending immigration applications for essential workers and businesses to ensure they can continue their operations.

Temporary Changes to Eligibility Requirements: To accommodate the challenges posed by the pandemic, the Canadian government has made quick changes to eligibility requirements for some immigration programs, allowing more skilled workers and businesses to apply.


The world has changed. The global economy is forever altered. The impact of COVID-19 on skilled workers and business immigration will not be as severe as it was in the past, but it is still significant.

However, with the right policies, immigration can continue to benefit Canada’s economy, skilled workforce, and businesses.

We hope this article has helped you to know the impact COVID-19 has had on skilled worker immigration and business immigration. However, we’re working hard to make sure that the application process is simple so that we can get you through the system as quickly as possible.

We’d love to hear how COVID-19 has impacted your life and how we can help you through this difficult time. Please feel free to contact us or book a zoom call meeting if you need any assistance with the process.

The Startup Visa and Self-Employed Persons Program: A Comprehensive Overview

If you dream of starting your own business but have yet to, now’s the time to consider it. The Startup Visa and Self-Employed Persons Program may allow you to run a business and live in Canada permanently.

The Canadian Startup Visa program is aimed at entrepreneurs with innovative ideas who want to relocate to Canada to start a new business venture. The self-employed Persons Program allows individuals already living in Canada to work without the need for employer sponsorship.

This blog will walk you through a detailed overview of the self-employed and SUV programs, eligibility requirements, benefits, and which options you should take into account. Let’s cut to the chase and get to it!

Startup Visa Program

The Startup Visa Program in Canada is a government-run immigration program designed to attract and retain entrepreneurial talent worldwide.

The program offers a fast-track route to permanent residency for eligible foreign entrepreneurs who have a qualified business idea and the support of a designated Canadian organization.

Through the SUV program, 555 foreign nationals had been granted permanent residence in Canada by the end of 2022. An unprecedented 612 new permanent residents were expected to arrive in the country by the end of that same year.

Eligibility Criteria

The eligibility criteria for the Startup Visa Program are as follows:

Business Concept: The entrepreneur must have a qualifying business concept with the potential for high growth and job creation.

  • Your share of the company’s voting stock must account for at least 10%.
  • Holding at least 50% of the voting power of all shares in the designated organization is required.

Support from a Designated Organization: The entrepreneur must have consent from a designated organization, such as a venture capital firm, angel investor group, or business incubator.

  • You must present a business plan and make a convincing case to get the company to invest in you.
  • The process of presenting your company’s business idea to a potential investor will vary from organization to organization.
  • If your presentation goes well, you’ll be given a letter of recommendation to include with your application for a startup visa.
  • A designated angel investor group must attest that it is investing at least $75,000 in the approved business or that the combined investments of two or more such groups equal at least $75,000;
  • A designated venture capital firm must confirm that it is investing at least $200,000 in the approved business or the backing of two or more selected venture capital firms totaling $200,000;
  • The applicant must receive confirmation from an approved business incubator that they have been accepted into the incubator’s program.

Language Proficiency: The entrepreneur must meet a minimum language proficiency (CLB 5) requirement in either English or French.

Proof of Funds: Applicants must demonstrate that they have enough financial resources to support themselves and their businesses during the startup phase. The amount required for proof of funds varies based on the size of the applicant’s family.

Benefits of the Startup Visa Program

The Startup Visa Program in Canada offers several benefits to eligible foreign entrepreneurs looking to start a business in Canada:

Fast-Track to Permanent Residency: The program provides a fast-track route to permanent residency for qualified entrepreneurs and their families.

Access to Canadian Business Network: The program offers access to Canada’s business network, including mentorship, investment, and support from designated organizations.

Diverse Business Environment: Canada is known for its diverse and inclusive business environment, which provides a supportive environment for entrepreneurs to start and grow their businesses.

Access to Skilled Talent: The country’s highly skilled workforce offers a pool of talented individuals for entrepreneurs to tap into, increasing the potential for success.

Strong Support System: Canada provides a robust support system for entrepreneurs, including business incubation programs, funding, and tax incentives.

High Quality of Life: With a stable political and economic environment, a high standard of living, and vital social services, Canada is a desirable destination for entrepreneurs looking to start a business and raise a family.

In summary, the Startup Visa Program provides a unique opportunity for foreign entrepreneurs to bring their business ideas to Canada, access its business network, and benefit from its supportive environment for entrepreneurship.

Self-Employed Persons Program

The Self-Employed Program in Canada is an immigration program designed for individuals who have relevant experience in cultural activities or athletics and have the intention and ability to establish themselves as self-employed persons in Canada.

The program is intended for individuals who can contribute to Canada’s cultural and athletic life.

Eligibility criteria

Relevant Experience: Applicants must have at least two years of relevant experience in cultural activities or athletics and provide evidence of their expertise.

Intent and Ability to Be Self-Employed: Applicants must demonstrate their intention and ability to establish themselves as self-employed persons in Canada and contribute to the cultural and athletic life of the country.

Language Proficiency: Candidates must demonstrate a command of English or French at a high enough level to be considered.

Financial Self-Sufficiency: Applicants must demonstrate economic self-sufficiency for 36 months after arrival in Canada.

Other Requirements: Applicant and his immediate family members will need to undergo a medical examination and obtain police clearance documents.

Selection Factors:

Selection Criteria Maximum Points
Adaptability 6
Experience 35
Age 10
Language Proficiency (French & English) 24
Education 25

The table displays the maximum number of points awarded for each selection criterion. The total number of points available is 100, and applicants must score a minimum of 35 points to be eligible for the Self-Employed program.

Benefits of the Self-Employed Persons Program

The Self-Employed Program in Canada provides several unique benefits to qualified applicants, including

  • The program offers a pathway to permanent residency in Canada for individuals who can demonstrate their ability to establish and manage a successful business or practice in the cultural or athletic sector.
  • The program provides opportunities for individuals with experience in the artistic or athletic industry to start businesses or practice in Canada and contribute to the country’s cultural and athletic life.
  • The self-employed category allows individuals to be their boss and pursue their entrepreneurial vision without being tied to a specific employer or job offer.
  • As permanent residents, self-employed individuals can access various services and benefits, including healthcare, education, and social services.
  • The program supports individuals who can positively contribute to Canada’s cultural and athletic life.

To Sum Up,

The Startup Visa and Self-Employed Persons Programs are excellent opportunities for immigrants who want to start their businesses in Canada.

The visa program is aimed at helping immigrant entrepreneurs who have a viable business idea with the potential to grow. It is also an excellent option for self-employed people who wish to start their own business but need more financial resources.

This blog has provided all the information you need about these two programs. If you have any questions or concerns about them, please don’t hesitate to reach out!