Hong Kong residents to have new path for Canada permanent residence
The new open work permit is the first of the new immigration measures coming available to the people of Hong Kong this year. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced that applications will start February 8th, 2021 for the new Canadian open work permit.
The new work permits last three (3) years and allow Hong Kongers to gain work experience in Canada. Candidates can then use the experience toward an immigration application.
To be eligible for the new work permit, applicants must have earned a Canadian post-secondary diploma or degree within the last five (5) years, or have an equivalent foreign credential. Post-secondary diplomas must be from programs of at least two (2) years in duration. Candidates must hold either a Hong Kong Special Administrative Region or British National Overseas passport.
Visitor visa holders, students, and temporary workers who are currently in Canada may apply for the new open work permit online. Those who apply abroad are subject to Canada’s COVID-19 safety measures – including travel restrictions, mandatory quarantine, and PCR testing.
Hong Kongers, who are not in Canada, will need to have a valid job offer or meet another travel exemption, and comply with all public health requirements to enter Canada. More details to come later.
Canada is also working on two new permanent immigration pathways for Hong Kongers. One will be for those who have at least one (1) year of Canadian work experience, and who meet the language and education criteria. The other pathway will allow international students from Hong Kong to apply directly for permanent residence after graduating from a Canadian post-secondary school. It is expected that these programs will be in effect later this year.