Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism minister Jason Kenney announced the plans for the so-called Start-Up Visa scheme on Thursday.
It is due to be officially launched on 1 April.
The scheme was described by the Toronto Star newspaper as potentially putting Canada “ahead of its competitors, such as Australia, the United Kingdom and United States, where entrepreneurs are offered only temporary residency, and their ultimate status hinges on business success”.
According to an official announcement of the scheme on the website of Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), an arm of the Canadian government, the Start-Up Visa programme would “link immigrant entrepreneurs with private sector organisations in Canada that have experience working with start-ups, and [which] can provide essential resources”.
Entrepreneurs keen to take advantage of the programme would require the support of a Canadian angel investor group or venture capital fund before they could apply. Initially, Citizenship and Immigration Canada , an arm of the Canadian government, will collaborate with two umbrella groups: Canada’s Venture Capital & Private Equity Association (CVCA) and the National Angel Capital Organization (NACO), according to the announcement.
The programme, it noted, is one of “a series of transformational changes to Canada’s immigration system that will make it faster, more flexible”, and better-focused on Canada’s economic needs than the current system.
“Recruiting dynamic entrepreneurs from around the world will help Canada remain competitive in the global economy,” Kenney said in the statement.