There are several forms of business immigration available in Canada. Several are offered directly by the Federal Government and even more are offered by Provincial Governments under their Nominee Programs.
The Canada Business Immigration Category of visas was designed to attract experienced business people to Canada. Successful candidates are those who can invest in Canada, start businesses in Canada and generate revenues and employment for Canadians.
There are four main categories:
Investor Category: aimed at successful senior executives with managerial experience or successful owners or part-owners who have the intention and ability to invest in Canada for a term of 5 years. There is no requirement to start your own business under this program.
Entrepreneur Immigrant Visa: aimed at successful owners with significant business experience who have the intention and ability to own and manage a business in Canada, which generates revenues and employment. A requirement of the program is that the immigrant must start a qualifying business in Canada.
Self-Employed Immigrant Visa: aimed at persons with relevant experience in world-class athletics or cultural activities or with farm management experience, who have the intention and ability to become self-employed in Canada.
Provincial Programs for Business: These programs are currently offered in 4 Provinces, including British Columbia, Manitoba, Quebec and New Brunswick. Their aim is specifically to develop local economies, and each program offers different programs to achieve these aims.
Introduction: The Immigrant Investor Program (also known as the Investor Category of the Business Class) seeks to attract experienced businesspersons and capital to Canada. This category is ideal for those who want to immigrate to Canada but who do not wish to be obligated to engage in any type of business/employment activity upon their arrival. The ever-increasing popularity of the Immigrant Investor Program among new immigrants to Canada is self-evident. In addition to the Canadian Investor Category, there is also the Quebec Investor Category, which is also aimed at those business people who have sufficient capital, but do not want to make an investment in a specific business.
Eligibility: To be eligible to apply for the Investor Category, Investors must demonstrate business experience, a minimum net worth of 800,000 CAD and make an investment of 400,000 CAD by depositing their funds for five (5) years with the Government of Canada or the Government of Quebec, depending on which program the Investor chooses. An Investor's net worth need not have been created by his/her own endeavours but, rather, must have been "legally obtained" (i.e. inheritance, gift, etc.). Assets of an Investor's spouse/common-law partner/same-sex partner are also included when assessing net worth.
Management Experience: There are two (2) ways for an Investor to demonstrate business experience:
1. management and control of a qualifying business of sufficient size; OR
2. management of a business, or a portion of a business, (without the need to own it) with at least five (5) full-time (37.5 hours per week or more) employees.
Financing Of Investment: It is possible to finance your investment in the Immigrant Investor Program or the Quebec Investor Program. Both programs have policies in place to support these financing mechanism. VisaMAX is able to arrange financing options for either program with our participating banking partners.
Generally speaking, with a minimum deposit of 125,000 CAD, an investor can secure the maximum loan from these financial institutions in order to complete the required 400,000 CAD five (5) year deposit. This offer may vary according to Canadian interest rate fluctuations and the financial institution concerned.
ENTREPRENEUR IMMIGRANT VISA
Introduction: The Entrepreneur Program seeks to attract experienced business people interested in moving to Canada and establishing a business. A condition of the Visa is that the entrepreneur must manage a business in Canada that will contribute to the economy and create jobs.
Eligibility: Entrepreneurs must demonstrate business experience and a minimum net worth of 300,000 CAD. An Entrepreneur's net worth need not have been created by his/her own endeavours but, rather, must have been "legally obtained" (i.e. inheritance, gift, etc.). Assets of an Entrepreneur's spouse/common-law partner/same-sex partner are also included when assessing net worth. Unlike Investors, the only way in which an Entrepreneur can demonstrate business experience is through management and control of a qualifying business of sufficient size. Entrepreneurs will be required to provide documentation proving that, within any two (2) of the last five (5) years, they controlled and managed a Qualifying Business that meets any two (2) of the defined requirements/attributes for full-time (37.5 hours per week or more) employees, sales, net income and equity.
The following chart sets out the minimum requirements for a Qualifying Business at various percentages of ownership.
|ATTRIBUTE||% OWNERSHIP OF BUSINESS|
|(iii)||NET INCOME (CAD)||50,000||100,000||250,000|
Terms and Conditions after Immigrating: The successful applicant is granted a conditional Permanent Resident Visa, and must establish a qualifying business within three years. A qualifying business is one that for a period of at least one (1) year within a period of not more than three (3) years after landing, the immigrant has owned and managed a Qualifying Canadian Business that meets any two (2) of the defined requirements/attributes for full-time (37.5 hours per week or more) employees, sales, net income and equity.
The following chart sets out the minimum requirements for a Qualifying Canadian Business at various percentages of ownership.
|ATTRIBUTE||% OWNERSHIP OF BUSINESS|
|(iii)||NET INCOME (CAD)||25,000||50,000||75,000|
At least one (1) incremental, full-time equivalent (37.5 hours per week or more) job must be created for someone other than the Entrepreneur and the Entrepreneur's dependants. In addition, the Entrepreneur must have provided active and ongoing participation in the management of the business for at least one (1) year. A minimum of one-third (1/3) ownership is required.
The Self-employed program is designed to attract foreign nationals who have the ability to employ themselves and make significant contributions to cultural activities, athletics (sports) or farming in Canada.
You need to meet the following requirements in order to apply:
Ability to be self-employed that will create employment at least for yourself in Canada
Intention to make a significant contribution in specified economic activities:
- self-employment in cultural activities or in athletics or;
- participation at a world-class level in cultural activities or athletics or;
- purchase farming land and manage a farm
Relevant Experience: A self-employed applicant must have self-employment experience in the fields of culture, athletics or farm management for more than two years within the last five years. The self-employment experience requirement does not apply to those who have participated in a world-class level in cultural or athletics activities for more than two years within the last five years. "World class" level identifies persons who are known internationally. It also identifies persons who may not be known internationally but perform at the highest levels in their discipline.
Examples of self-employed category: music teachers, artists, illustrators, film makers, freelance journalists, choreographers, set designers, coaches/trainers, theatrical/musical directors, impresarios and farmers.
No immigration conditions are imposed on the self-employed class. You must have enough money to support yourself and your family members after you arrive in Canada.
Self-employed person's financial asset may also be a measure of intent and ability to establish economically in Canada. There is no minimum investment level for self-employed person. The capital required depends on the nature of the work.
PROVINCIAL ENTREPRENEUR PROGRAMS
Information on some of these provinces which offer programs for Entrepreneurs:
All provincial programs are subject to final approval by the Federal Government. In most cases, this approval will be given, however due to medical inadmissibility of the applicant or an accompanying family member, or criminality or security, the applicant may be declined. In addition, if the Federal Government uncovers fraudulent documents, or discovers information which may question the intent of the applicant to reside in the Nominating province, this information is referred to the relevant Province, who will likely withdraw their Nomination, thereby leading to a refusal of a Visa.