Hongkongers applying for permanent residency in Canada will be eligible to receive work permits, allowing them to extend their stay in the country

Hongkongers applying for permanent residency in Canada will be eligible to receive work permits, allowing them to extend their stay in the country

Hong Kong nationals applying for permanent residency in Canada will be granted work permits, which will enable them to remain in the country while they await the decision of their applications.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) stated in a statement  that “processing times for this pathway have grown due to a high volume of applications, and many applicants are at risk of seeing their temporary status in Canada expire before their permanent residence applications are finalized.”

A new open work permit will be granted to Hong Kong applicants under the new policy, which is set to go into effect last May 27, 2024, enabling them to remain in Canada while they wait the government’s decision on their application.

Applicants for permanent residency can work for the majority of Canadian firms with an open work permit. The new regulation will enable applicants to prolong their temporary status for a period of five years.

Canada Lifeboat Scheme

A few months after Beijing unilaterally enacted national security laws in Hong Kong, criminalizing subversion, secession, cooperation with foreign forces, and terrorist activities, Canada first unveiled its “lifeboat” immigration program in February 2021.

The program offers two more routes for Hongkongers to become permanent residents: Stream A, which is for individuals who graduated from a Canadian post-secondary institution within the three years before applying, and Stream B, which necessitates a year of work experience in Canada.

HK applying for PR in Canada

If an applicant under either of the two pathways has held a work permit or study permit within three years of the IRCC receiving their application for permanent residency, they will be eligible for the new open work permits.

Until their application is approved, applicants seeking an extension of their permit will remain in a temporary legal status.

An applicant may apply under the new policy and simultaneously restore their status if their temporary status expired within the ninety-day period prior to filing for a work permit.

The statement came after news in July of last year that Hongkongers applying for permanent residency under Stream B would no longer need to complete a post-secondary education requirement.

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