Canada Immigration for Investors Entrepreneur and Self EmployedCanada used to have an immigration policy and category for investors falling under these two categories – ntrepreneur and self employed. But since June 2014, this category has been terminated, and only permanent workers under skilled worker or skilled tradesperson categories are permitted to make application for permanent residence. This notice terminating the immigration for investors was announced through the Economic Action Plan 2014 Act (Bill C- 31), and was given Royal Assent to become a law on the 19 th of June, 2014. This law brought to an end these two categories of applications – the Federal Immigrant Investor Program (IIP) and the Federal Entrepreneur Program (EN). The EN covered both entrepreneurs and self employed categories of applicants.
The investor program (IIP) had been in rough waters for some years before the termination. The qualifying criteria hadn’t been changed since its inception, and in 2010, the government realized that changes were needed in order to revive it. The qualifying criteria were doubled in 2010, and the program was also put on hold for some time to allow all stakeholders to get used to the changes. Qualified investors needed to have at least two years of business management experience, and they also needed to have a minimum legally obtained net worth of $1600000 and
also be willing to make an investment of $800000. Finally, they needed to meet the minimum health and security requirements laid down by the immigration department.
As per the notice of termination, the main reason for termination of these programs was the huge number of applications every year and the resultant backlog of applications. According to the termination notice, this backlog was choking the system and was creating a drag on the smooth processing of applications. Canada would be more interested in inviting and processing immigration applications which would contribute to the growth of the Canadian economy, as per the notice.
The notice also explained in great detail the steps forward for those who were partially or fully into the application process under this program. A task force was also set up in Ottawa to quickly process the long standing as well as recent applications which would be terminated as a result of this law, and take steps to ensure quick refund of the paid fees for those applicants who were eligible for a refund. Some of those applicants were reported to have got together to consider taking legal action against this termination.