It’s no secret that Canada values newcomers interested in moving to Canada as it inflates economic growth. Canada will continue to be the world’s top destination for talent, capital, and jobs by inviting these individuals with open arms, especially those from Hong Kong.
In recent months, many protests have taken place due to the extradition bill being passed which allows criminal suspects to be handed over to mainland China under certain circumstances. Many have proposed that this risked exposure would give China a greater influence over Hong Kong and could directly impact activists, journalists, and students. The Hong Kong government has cracked down on these individuals causing them to rapidly flee the country.
How Canada will Support Hong Kongers
On November 12, 2020, Minister Marco Mendicino announced new measures that will attract students and youth from Hong Kong to live in Canada by offering a new open work permit and expanding their pathways to permanent residency. Aside from accepting more refugees to Canada, his plan was made for the 2021-2023 Immigration Levels Plan which will encourage recent Hong Kong graduates and those with essential work experience to choose Canada as a place to study, work, and live. Along with this plan, Medincino also mentioned that existing programs will be enhanced to support those Hong Kongers currently in Canada.
New Pathways for Hong Kong Youth
Canada recognizing the talent and skills many Hong Kong students and graduates can bring to Canada’s economy and workforce, the IRCC has announced a new initiative that allows Hong Kong residents in Canada or abroad with recently completed post-secondary studies to apply for an open work permit which may be valid for up to 3 years.
Obtaining an open work permit will allow residents, to visit or stay in Canada and gain valuable employment experience. To follow this experience, a new pathway to permanent resident status for in-Canada Hong Kong residents who meet specific eligibility criteria is being created at this time. This new pathway will be available in 2021, and criteria will include minimum language and education levels and 1 year of work experience in Canada.
The government has also agreed to expedite study permit applications for those who are eligible to study in Canada. There has already been an increase in applications for study permits from Hong Kong residents in 2020, and Canada will continue to grow this opportunity.
For Canadians in Hong Kong
During Medincino’s briefing of plans for Hong Kong residents in Canada, he also reassured that all Canadians currently in Hong Kong can come back and all documents they require will be expedited followed by a 14-day quarantine upon arrival