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Canada’s Open Work Permit Stream for H-1B Visa Holders

Canada Immigration Minister Sean Fraser recently announced a new initiative to create an open work-permit stream, enabling 10,000 American H-1B visa holders to work in Canada. The program, as stated by Canada’s Ministry of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship, will also extend study or work permits to the family members of H-1B visa holders.

Canada Work Permit

The decision comes as a relief for thousands of workers in the high-tech sector who are employed by companies with significant operations in both Canada and the United States. Many of these individuals hold H-1B specialty occupation visas, and starting from July 16, 2023, they, along with their immediate family members, will be eligible to apply for work permits in Canada.

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Under the new policy, successful applicants will receive an open work permit valid for up to three years, granting them the freedom to work for any employer across Canada. Furthermore, their spouses and dependents will also have the opportunity to apply for a temporary resident visa, along with work or study permits as required.

H-1B Visa Holders

While specific details about the qualifications and admission criteria for the immigration stream targeting tech professionals have not been provided, Minister Fraser stated that by the end of this year, the Canadian government intends to develop an avenue for the world’s most talented individuals to work in Canada’s tech sector, regardless of whether they have a job offer or not.

The H-1B visa program, implemented in the United States, allows foreign nationals to temporarily work in specialized occupations, particularly in the technology sector. However, the pandemic-induced economic downturn resulted in many tech companies reducing their workforce, leaving numerous H-1B visa holders in search of new employment opportunities.

The Canadian government’s decision to offer work permits to H-1B visa holders not only provides a welcome alternative but also presents an opportunity for skilled individuals to contribute to Canada’s thriving tech industry.

Source: Hindustantimes

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