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Home » Immigration

Should Canada create a Startup Visa for immigrant entrepreneurs ?

Submitted by on January 27, 2011 – 6:28 amOne Comment

A group of Van­cou­ver entre­pre­neurs is lea­ding a cam­pai­gn encou­ra­ging the Cana­dian govern­ment to create a new « star­tup visa » for immi­grant entre­pre­neurs.

Laun­ched by Dan­ny Robin­son (CEO, Bri­tish Colum­bia Inno­va­tion Coun­cil), Mau­ra Rod­gers (Exe­cu­tive Direc­tor. Boo­tup Entre­pre­neu­rial Socie­ty), and Boris Wertz (Foun­der, W Media Ven­tures), Star­tup Visa Cana­da is an ini­tia­tive « to encou­rage the brigh­test entre­pre­neu­rial minds from around the world to choose Cana­da as the best place to start a company. »

The group argues that the cur­rent « fede­ral and pro­vin­cial govern­ment­s’ entre­pre­neu­rial pro­grams contain mini­mum per­so­nal fixed asset pro­vi­sions of about $300,000 and a long appro­val pro­cess that make it near­ly impos­sible for immi­grant entre­pre­neurs to start com­pa­nies here. »

Among their proposals :

  • replace the cur­rent mini­mum asset pro­vi­sions with a mini­mum Cana­dian invest­ment of $150,000.
  • enable qua­li­fied Immi­grants to part­ner with local investor(s) to expe­dite their tem­po­ra­ry work permits.
  • require Immi­grants to have at least a one-third equi­ty posi­tion in their com­pa­nies, be active in mana­ge­ment, and create at least three full-time equi­va­lent (FTE) jobs over the course of a two-year period.

A simi­lar star­tup visa ini­tia­tive is under­way in the Uni­ted States, where Sena­tors John Ker­ry (Demo­crat of Mas­sa­chu­setts) and Richard Lugar (Repu­bli­can of India­na) have intro­du­ced the Star­tup Visa Act.

What do you think ? Is the star­tup visa a good idea for Cana­da ? Did you come to Cana­da under Citi­zen­ship and Immi­gra­tion Cana­da’s cur­rent entre­pre­neur pro­grams ? If so, what was your expe­rience ? Please leave a com­ment and let us know.

And if you agree with the Star­tup Visa Cana­da Ini­tia­tive, you can sign their peti­tion here.

For more on the topic of star­tup visas, see :

Star­tup Visa Cana­da’s web­site and blog

Tech­Vibes article on the Star­tup Visa initiative

Star­tup­North blog post offe­ring sug­ges­ted revi­sions to the Star­tup Visa proposal

Wall Street Jour­nal piece about the Star­tup Visa Act in the U.S.

« Bet­ter Way » car­toon and pho­to by Dave Char­bon­neau (fli­ckr)

One Comment »

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    […] This post was men­tio­ned on Twit­ter by A Far­ber & Part­ners , All­top Cana­da. All­top Cana­da said : Should Cana­da Create a Star­tup Visa for Immi­grant Entre­pre­neurs ? […]