Waze Immigration

Business Immigration Program

Both the federal and provincial/territorial governments welcome business immigrants and offer services to help immigrants start a business and settle in Canada.

Option 1: Entrepreneur Work Permit Program

The Entrepreneur Work Permit program is designed for self-employed individuals and entrepreneurs who want to come to Canada to start and operate their businesses. To apply for this program, entrepreneurs must own at least 50% of their business in Canada and present a business concept (or business plan) that explains how their businesses will contribute to the Canadian economy and generate employment opportunities for Canadian citizens and residents. Specifically, the applicants should focus on the following questions in their business plan:
  • Why is the business plan viable, and what benefits will it create for Canadians?
  • How many employment opportunities will the business create for Canadians?
  • Will the business improve/increase the export of Canadian products/services?
  • Will there be any technological or other advancements in the Canadian industry through the introduction of innovation, differentiation or improved skills?
  • Will the business contribute to the development of a regional or remote community?
  • Will the business provide a unique service or sell unique products?
An initial work permit to operate a business in Canada will be issued for two years and maybe renewed if the company continues to be actively engaged in doing business. Entrepreneurs will have a chance to apply for permanent residence after operating their business for at least one year in Canada, provided that they meet all the conditions for permanent residence application.

Option 2: Start-up Business

A start-up business must be a new business intended to be operated in Canada:

Requirement 1: Letter of support by the designated angel investor group or venture capital fund or business incubator.

  • Minimum financial commitment of $200,000 from a designated venture capital fund or $75,000 from two or more designated angel investor groups or acceptance into a business incubator program
  • The organization will send a letter of support to the candidate and a commitment certificate to IRCC
  • Commitment Certificate completed by an authorized member of the designated entity

Requirement 2: Language Requirement of CLB 5+ in English or French

Requirement 3: You must also show that you have enough money to support yourself and your family after you arrive in Canada.

Option 3: Entrepreneur Programs of the Provinces 

Each province in Canada has different sets of criteria for investing and assessment criteria, so you will need to verify your eligibility with the specific province. To apply, you need to develop a detailed business plan which explains the type of business you intend to purchase or establish and includes financial projections demonstrating how your purchase or creation of this business will benefit the local economy and the overall labour market.

The application process, in general, is divided into six stages:

  1. Expression of Interest – register your interest with the province of your choice and describe your business concept and the intended investment;
  2. Invitation to Apply – if your score is sufficient, the province will invite you to submit your application which includes your net worth verifications and the required documents;
  3. Interview – once you meet the eligibility criteria, you will have an interview with the local immigration authorities to discuss your business plan and your commitment;
  4. Performance Agreement & Execution –you will be required to sign a Performance Agreement with the provincial authorities that would specify the details of your required investment amount, your hiring plan and active management of your business. At that time, you will also receive a work permit to start executing your business plan, including investing the pledged amount into your business and creating employment opportunities for Canadians;
  5. Nomination – Once you comply with the terms of your performance agreement, you may apply for Nomination for Permanent Residence to the provincial authorities; and
  6. PR application – Upon receiving your Nomination Letter from the province, you can submit your application for permanent residence to the Federal immigration authorities.

If you have any questions, you can book consultation to speak with immigration consultant.

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