Lab Researchers - Innovation Stream Work Permit

On June 26, 2023, Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) released Canada’s Tech Talent Strategy Backgrounder detailing a strategy to embrace Canada as an emerging leader in global technology talent recruitment. As part of this announcement, IRCC identified the goal of developing an Innovation Stream work permit which would be an LMIA-exempt employer-specific work permit issued for up to a duration of five years for highly skilled workers who are:

  • In select in-demand occupations.
  • Destined to work for employers who have been identified by the Government of Canada as contributing to industrial innovation goals.

On March 22, 2024, IRCC’s website was updated to reflect the release of an Innovation Stream employer-specific work permit. This work permit is for individuals who have received a job offer in a highly skilled occupation (i.e. in National Occupational Classification (NOC) Training, Education, Experience and Responsibilities (TEER) categories 0, 1, 2 or 3) from an employer who is participating in the Global Hypergrowth Project (GHP).

The GHP, launched by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada and backed by Innovation Canada, is a new service with the goal of assisting companies who are rooted in Canada to scale-up. Eight Canadian organizations have been selected in the first group of participants: Ada, AlayaCare, CellCarta, Clarius, Clio, Duchesnay Pharmaceutical Group (DPG), lightspeed, and Vive Crop Protection. If you have received a job offer from one of these companies, you may be eligible for an LMIA-exempt employer specific work permit under the Innovation Stream.

There are currently no opportunities for additional organizations to apply to participate in the GHP, however the program website calls for interested parties to “check back for future opportunities.”

Perhaps another Innovation Stream work permit category will be released in the coming year which targets select in-demand occupations as this was the other type of work permit being considered in the June 26, 2023 announcement.

For additional insights into Canada’s Innovation Stream Work Permit and how it may affect you, please contact us.


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