Online Consultations to Improve the Immigrant Investor Program
By A Correspondent
Delivering on the Economic Action Plan 2012, the Government of Canada, on July 31, launched online consultations to engage the public on ways to improve the federal Immigrant Investor Program (IIP).
“We can no longer be a passive player in the global competition for talent and investment. That is why we need to review our immigration programs to create dynamic opportunities that enable immigrants’ investments to directly benefit the Canadian economy,” said Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney.
The Economic Action Plan announced that business immigration programs will be reformed to target more active investment for Canadian growth companies. Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) is now inviting online submissions from stakeholders and the public on how the department can:
- · Increase the economic benefit that immigrant investment capital brings to Canada;
- · Attract experienced, international investors with the skills and resources needed to ensure they integrate into Canada’s economy; and
- · Develop efficient and cost-effective ways of delivering an investment program.
“I am open to creative ideas and suggestions from the business community on how to maximize the economic benefits of such programs to Canada,” said Minister Kenney.
The goal of these consultations is to determine how best to target high value global investors and to increase the economic benefit that immigrant investment capital brings to Canada. The current IIP offers permanent residency to individuals who meet specific criteria and are able to make an $800,000, five-year, interest-free loan to provincial and territorial governments for economic development activities.
CIC is also consulting Canadians on whether the government should use its new powers under the amended Immigration and Refugee Protection Act to create short-term programs that could have a far greater impact on Canada’s economy, for example by possibly favouring active use of investment capital to promote economic growth.
CIC implemented a temporary pause on new IIP applications on July 1, 2012, in order to allow for a thorough review of the program. Nonetheless, in 2012, Canada intends to admit 5,500 to 6,000 newcomers under the Federal Business category, which includes investors.
The online consultations are open for input until September 4, 2012. Interested participants can find more information at: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/department/consultations/index.asp. CIC is also consulting with provinces and territories on changes to federal immigrant investor programming.
A summary of the highlights from the online consultations will be available on the CIC website once completed.