Federal plan to fast-track foreign talent could capitalize on Trump’s crackdown

Global Skills Strategy program to streamline visas, work permits to kick in June 12

The federal government will launch a new program to fast-track “low-risk, high-talent” foreign workers to Canada this June.

The plan sets a two-week turnaround for processing visas and short-term work permits to give startups faster access to highly skilled workers.

“Canada certainly could benefit from some of the international talent affected by the actions in the U.S. recently,” said Patrick Snider, director of skills and immigration policy for the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. “That being said, we have to expect other countries will also look to capitalize on this moment as well.”

Snider said Canada is likely not going to be the only country to “see the potential from attracting global talent, so we will still have to make sure our system is fast and effective.”

The Global Talent Stream is a key component of the Global Skills Strategy, announced last fall and designed to help Canadian companies get the unique skill sets needed to help grow businesses.

Navdeep Bains, the minister of innovation, science, and economic development, announced the June 12 launch during an event at Toronto’s Peraso Technologies Inc. today. His message to the world was in stark contrast to the U.S. administration’s steps to crack down on immigration and close its doors to travellers from six countries.