Canada: New Temporary Foreign Worker Pilot Program – Global Talent Stream

Last Updated: July 26 2017
Article by Rita R. Tripathy

Introduction

The Temporary Foreign Worker Program has now launched a new pilot program called the Global Talent Stream (GTS) which will run for an initial period of two years and will significantly reduce processing times for certain Labour Market Impact Assessments (LMIA) and the issuance of Work Permits. In addition, the GTS will offer flexible recruitment requirements. With some of the current concerns with US immigration, Canada may be able to attract talent that would normally be destined to the US. As explained by The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship:

Employers that are making plans for job-creating investments in Canada will often need an experienced leader, dynamic researcher or an innovator with unique skills not readily available in Canada to make that investment happen. The Global Skills Strategy aims to give those employers confidence that when they need to hire from abroad, they'll have faster, more reliable access to top talent.1

Program Goals

One goal of the program is to provide easier and faster processing of visa and work permit applications for foreign nationals who possess unique global talent and/or who are highly skilled. The program also aims to provide high-growth Canadian companies with quick and easy access to unique global talent and/or highly skilled foreign nationals for certain in demand occupations which will assist Canadian companies in succeeding in the global marketplace. Another goal of GTS is to create new jobs and assist in transferring specialized knowledge to Canadians and permanent residents. The target of the new program is to have the applications assessed by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) within 10 business days and allowing the work permit applications for the qualified individuals to be processed within 14 business days for high-growth firms and for unique highly specialized and skilled workers which will result in job creation and knowledge transfer. The two week work permit processing will be available to workers applying from overseas whose employers have been approved to hire a foreign worker through the GTS and will also apply to NOC 0 (executive, managerial) and NOC A (professional) applying through the International Mobility Program. The program is aiming to attract low-risk, highly-skilled foreign nationals.

This new program recognizes that attracting talent is critical to economic growth, and that employers have been facing barriers to accessing this talent.

The government goal is to help attract foreign investment through a dedicated immigration service.

The Categories in the Program

The GTS pilot will target two categories of Canadian companies. There is the Unique and Specialized Talent for Category A of the Global Talent Stream, and the Global Talent Occupations List for Category B:

  • Category A includes: High-growth firms that can demonstrate a need for unique talent in order to scale-up and grow, resulting in job creation and knowledge transfer to Canadians; and
  • Category B includes: Firms needing to hire highly-skilled foreign nationals for occupations found on a new "Skills Shortage List", resulting in training investments for Canadian workers.

An employer may be eligible for Category A of the GTS if the employer has been referred to the GTS by ESDC's designated partners and the employer is hiring unique and specialized talent. Agreements have been reached with a range of partners who will be able to refer companies to Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada's (IRCC) new dedicated service channel and to ESDC's Global Talent Stream. We understand that this current list will be continually updated and that discussions are continuing with many other potential partners. The goal is to have referral partners in all parts of the country with the significant knowledge and insight needed to refer companies to the dedicated service channel.

For Category A of the Global Talent Stream, innovative firms must be seeking to hire unique and specialized talent. Unique and specialized talent is indicated by:

  • Advanced knowledge of the industry;
  • Advanced degree in an area of specialization of interest to the employer; AND/OR
  • Minimum of five years of experience in the field of specialized experience; AND
  • A highly paid position with a salary generally in the range of $80,000 or more.

For Category B of the Global Talent Stream, employers must be seeking to hire highly-skilled foreign workers to fill positions from a national global talent list identifying demand occupations which will be considered under the GTS. We expect this list to be updated and more occupations added to the list. This list currently includes the following occupations:

National
Classification (NOC)
Occupation
0213 Computer and information systems managers
2147 Computer engineers (except software engineers and designers)
2171 Information systems analysts and consultants
2172 Database analysts and data administrators
2173 Software engineers and designers
2174 Computer programmers and interactive media developers
2175 Web designers and developers
2241 Electrical and electronics engineering technologists and technicians (minimum wage $81,000 per year or $38.94 per hour)
2283 Information systems testing technicians (minimum wage $78,000 per year or $37.50 per hour)
Sub-set of 5241 Digital Media and Design (minimum wage $80,000 per year or $38.46 per hour and other requirements)

Program Requirements

The employers must demonstrate that the employer is actively engaged in the business where the temporary foreign worker will be employed. Documentation will have to be provided by the employer to show the employer has an operating and functioning business providing a good or service related to the job offer. Examples of documentation include a business licence, business incorporation documents, CRA documents or a lawyer attestation.

Similar to a regular LMIA, there is a $1,000 processing fee for each position requested.

The employer is required to work with ESDC to develop a Labour Market Benefits Plan that demonstrates the employer's commitment to activities that will have lasting, positive impacts on the Canadian labour market. One of the goals of the Labour Market Benefits Plan is to help the Government of Canada identify and track overall job creation, skills and training investments, which must benefit the Canadian economy through employment of high-skilled global talent.

Commitments within the Labour Market Benefits Plan are divided into mandatory and complementary benefits.

If the employer has been referred by one of the Global Talent Stream's designated partners and the employer is seeking to hire unique and specialized talent (Category A), the employer must commit to creating jobs, either directly or indirectly for Canadians and permanent residents as the mandatory benefit.

If the Canadian employer is seeking to hire highly-skilled foreign workers to fill positions in occupations on the Global Talent Occupations List (Category B), the employer must commit to increasing skills and training investments for Canadians and permanent residents as the mandatory benefit.

Complementary benefits, could include, but are not limited to, job creation, investment in skills and training, transferring knowledge to Canadians and permanent residents, enhanced company performance and implementing best practices or policies as an employer for the employer's workforce.

Unlike a regular LMIA there is no minimum recruitment requirement for the Global Talent Stream, however the employer is encouraged to recruit Canadians and permanent residents before offering a job to a temporary foreign worker. The employer will be asked, as part of their application to describe any recruitment efforts conducted, so it is recommended that the employer advertise.

Wages offered to temporary foreign workers should be similar to wages paid to Canadian and permanent resident employees hired for the same job and work location, and with similar skills and years of experience.

The requirement for the employer to pay the prevailing wage is defined as the highest of either:

  • the median wage on Job Bank,
  • the wage that is within the wage range that you are paying your current employees hired for the same job and work location, and with the same skills and years of experience, or
  • the applicable wage floor as identified in the Global Talent Occupations List.

Also important in the program is that work permit exemptions will be granted for short duration, high value work as well as to provide similar facilitative measures for brief academic stays of 120 days or less. This will cover highly-skilled workers who need to come to Canada for a very short-term assignment and researchers taking part in short-duration research projects being conducted in Canada will not require a work permit. The new work permit exemption for highly-skilled workers applies to all NOC 0 and NOC A workers. Eligible workers will be allowed one 15-day work permit-exempt stay in Canada every six months, or one 30-day work permit-exempt stay every 12 months.

Researchers coming to Canada will be permitted one 120-day stay every 12 months without requiring a work permit when they are working on a research project at a publicly-funded degree-granting institution or affiliated research institution.

In closing, we refer to a description of the program by The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour who had this to say2:

When companies are able to grow and thrive here in Canada, they create good, middleclass jobs for Canadians; our new Global Talent Stream will give companies a faster and more efficient process to bring in global talent, so they can grow and expand their Canadian workforces. We're keeping Canada competitive in the global marketplace and helping our industries grow and succeed.

Footnote

1. https://www.canada.ca/en/immigrationrefugeescitizenship/news/2017/06/government_of_canadalaunche stheglobalskillsstrategy.html

2. https://www.canada.ca/en/innovationscienceeconomicdevelopment/news/2017/03/ministers_bains_andhajduannouncecanadasglobalskillsstrategy.html

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Authors
 
In association with
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Tools
Print
Font Size:
Translation
Channels
Mondaq on Twitter
 
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
 
Email Address
Company Name
Password
Confirm Password
Position
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Accounting
 Anti-trust
 Commercial
 Compliance
 Consumer
 Criminal
 Employment
 Energy
 Environment
 Family
 Finance
 Government
 Healthcare
 Immigration
 Insolvency
 Insurance
 International
 IP
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Litigation
 Media & IT
 Privacy
 Real Estate
 Strategy
 Tax
 Technology
 Transport
 Wealth Mgt
Regions
Africa
Asia
Asia Pacific
Australasia
Canada
Caribbean
Europe
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
U.K.
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of www.mondaq.com

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about Mondaq.com’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.

Disclaimer

Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.

Registration

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to unsubscribe@mondaq.com with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.

Cookies

A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.

Links

This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.

Mail-A-Friend

If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.

Security

This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to webmaster@mondaq.com.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to EditorialAdvisor@mondaq.com.

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at enquiries@mondaq.com.

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at problems@mondaq.com and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.