Canadian Government to increase Investor Program Financial Requirements

Last year, only 30 minutes after it began, the federal government’s investor program reached its quota of 700 applicants. Now Canadian Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney wants to increase the amount immigration applicants need to invest to become permanent residents of Canada.

As reported in the National Post, Mr. Kenney said:

“I’ve always said that I believe Canada has been underselling itself through our Immigrant Investor Program ..

They get permanent residency in the best country in the world for lending Canadian governments $800,000 for five years … so it seems to me, given there are millions of millionaires around the world who would love to come to Canada, we can do better than that and we’re looking at ways we can redesign the program to extract more bang for the buck.”

Instead of an $800,000 loan to the federal government for five years, Mr. Kenney said he would prefer that that immigrant investors be required to make a permanent investment in Canada, and to show that the investment created a certain number of jobs for a certain number of years.

That is how the federal government’s entrepreneur program, suspended last July, worked. That program is currently being revamped to attract more “high value innovators” and is expected to be re-instated soon.

Mr. Kenney also said that the federal government is considering increasing the size of the required investment, which is currently less than the $1 million required by the investor programs of Australia and the US, and the equivalent of $1.6 million required by the UK’s.