On September 21, 2017, the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), came into effect provisionally. It is a free trade agreement between Canada and EU member states. It’s effects eliminate the application of the LMIA, Labour Market Impact Assessment, that is required before one can work in Canada.

The exemption of obtaining the LMIA makes the process of hiring internationally easier. CETA covers business visitors who fall in the following categories:

  • Short-term business visitors;
  • Independent professionals;
  • Contractual service suppliers;
  • Key personnel, i.e., company transferees, investors, business visitors to Canada for investment

Exemptions could be granted through IMP (Immigration Mobility Program) on business visitors from EU member states. One can apply for entry from within Canada or outside.

Business visitors to Canada for investment purposes and short-term business visitors can only stay in the country for a maximum of 90 days, in a six-month period.

Intra-Company Transferees under CETA must meet the following conditions:

  • They must have worked in an EU member state enterprise for a minimum of 1 year, or be a partner in the same enterprise;
  • Be on temporary transfer to a subsidiary, head company, or branch of the company in Canada.

Graduate Trainees in an EU member state also fall under the Intra-Company Transferee criteria. Additional rules that apply to them include:

  • They should possess a university degree;
  • Should be on temporary transfer as the other members in the category but for training, methods, career development, business techniques

Investors can stay in Canada for one year with the possibility of an extension of their stay. For independent professionals and contractual service providers, they can only remain in Canada for the duration of their contract or a maximum of one year, in a two-year period.

It is dependent on whichever is less than the other. Both also need to be citizens of an EU member state with a university degree or with an equivalent qualification, among many other requirements.

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