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International Mobility Program: A fast way to hire foreign workers

Programme de mobilité internationale

Successfully hiring foreign workers while avoiding the hassle of a Labor Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), this is the interest of the International Mobility Program (IMP); the opposite of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) in which the LMIA is an obligation to be met. This exemption from obtaining the LMIA applies to all components of the IMP.


The IMP work permit application process is straightforward and is made in just two steps. This ease of the process saves both parties time and even financial resources. However, the benefits of the IMP are not just for workers and employers. Canada continues to promote the IMP because of the economic, social and cultural interests it gets from it. In this article, we present three main components of the IMP namely: Francophone Mobility, International Experience Canada (EIC) and the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA).


1. International Mobility Program Plus (IMP+)


The International Mobility Program Plus (IMP+) is part of a recent agreement between Quebec and Ottawa. Announced only on August 6, 2021, this component of the IMP is exclusively intended for Quebec employers and foreigners who wish to settle permanently in Quebec. According to the agreement, 7,000 work permits exempt from the LMIA will be issued annually until 2023 to help the province of Quebec fill its skilled labor shortages, especially in key sectors of its economy. The IMP+ is open to foreign workers who have already obtained their Certificat de sélection du Québec (CSQ) but who are still outside Quebec. It aims at speeding up the arrival process of workers by facilitating the process of their hiring by Quebec employers.

2. International Experience Canada


International Experience Canada (IEC) has three components: The Working Holiday Permit, the Young Professionals Permit, the International Co-op Internship Permit. All of these programs have the particularity of offering young people a first work experience in Canada.


  • The Working Holiday Permit: The Working Holiday Permit is an open work permit that allows the candidate to travel to Canada and to be able to work to finance his stay. Valid for 12 to 24 months, it allows employers to have qualified labor quickly on site or to bring it to Canada within a relatively short period.
  • The Young Professionals Permit: The Young Professionals Permit is a closed work permit that requires young foreign workers to first obtain a job offer before coming to Canada. The advantage of this component is that it allows the employer to ensure the availability of labor throughout the period of the work permit.
  • The International Co-op Internship Permit: This component offers companies the opportunity to recruit young students who are looking for a professional internship to enhance their resume. For 12 months, the intern can perform several tasks for the benefit of the company, according to the directions given to him. The International Co-op Internship Permit makes it possible to compensate fairly quickly for the unavailability of professionals with several years of experience.


3. Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA)


The Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement, that entered into force on July 1, 2020, replaced the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in force since January 1, 1994. It is an agreement of economic and commercial free trade between the United States, Mexico and Canada. It enables the three countries to create a vast market of nearly 500 million consumers of goods and services. Initiated in response to the birth of the European bloc, the agreement even in its current version promotes the movement of goods and people. CUSMA promotes the temporary admission of businessmen and businesswomen from the three countries on a reciprocal basis. It exempts these people from obtaining an LMIA but requires that they be citizens of Canada, the United States or Mexico. Depending on the purpose of the trip, applicants can become temporary residents in one of these categories: business visitors, professionals, traders or investors, and people transferred within a company. They benefit from a temporary resident visa for a period of six months (6) to three (3) years, renewable or not. However, it should be noted that CUSMA does not facilitate admission to permanent residence and does not exclude checks related to identity and security.


Each of these aspects of the IMP has many particularities that cannot be presented in one article. As we master them all perfectly well, we are able to answer all your concerns if you contact us. For more than twenty years, we have successfully advised dozens of companies to choose the program that best suits their realities. You too need us to optimize your choices.

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