On September 21, 2017, the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between Canada and EU member states has been launched.
Chapter 10 of CETA facilitates entry for certain covered business persons who are citizens of Canada and EU member states by removing the requirement for a Labour Market Impact Assessments (LMIA).
The chapter covers the three following categories of visitors for business purposes:
- Key personnel: including intra-corporate (company) transferees, investors, and business visitors for investment purposes;
- Contractual service suppliers and independent professionals; and
- Short-term business visitors.
New LMIA exemption codes have been created to better capture data about business visitors from EU member states. These exemptions may be granted under the International Mobility Program (IMP).
The IMP program allows Canadian employers to bring in foreign workers or skilled foreign nationals without the need of an LMIA. Some workers are exempt from the LMIA process. This applies when there are shared benefits for Canadians and other economic and cultural advantages for Canada.
Some of these IMP foreign nationals could be:
- international students who graduated from a Canadian school;
- people working in Canada temporarily under free trade agreements, such as NAFTA, GATS and now CETA;
- people taking part in International Experience Canada;
- some permanent resident applicants settling in Canada while their application is finalized, and
- spouses of highly-skilled foreign workers.
Under CETA, some business visitors, intra-company transferees, investors, contractual service suppliers and independent professionals could be processed at a Canadian port-of-entry if they meet the conditions set out by the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Regulations (IRPA/IRPR), and some may apply from within Canada or at Canadian visa offices abroad.
For more information on all CETA categories, the requirements of the program and length of their work assignments in Canada can be found here: https://www.cic.gc.ca/english/resources/tools/temp/work/international/canada-eu.asp#CETA
Source: IRCC website.