Canada has unveiled its new policy on 8th January which will be beneficial for international students who were unable to meet Canadian work experience requirements due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Under this new policy, former international students with an expired or expiring Post-Graduate Work Permit (PGWP) will be allowed to apply for a new open work permit. This policy is in place to provide PGWP holders with more time to gain the work experience they need to be eligible to apply for Canadian immigration.
Former international students are able to fit in quickly into the Canadian labor market on the acquisition of permanent residence status due to their Canadian education and work experience according to a Canadian government research article.
The new open work permit has a validity of 18 months and will permit former international students to stay in Canada and search for work. Open work permits allow foreign nationals to work for any employer of their choice unlike closed work permits, which tie a foreign worker to just one employer in Canada.
In order to apply for an open work permit under the new policy, the following criteria must be met by the candidates:
- You must have a PGWP that expired on or after January 30, 2020, or a PGWP that expires in 4 months or less from the date of application.
- You need to be residing in Canada.
- You need to have a valid temporary status or be applying to restore your status.
- The application process will be open from January 27 to July 27, 2021.
Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) have estimated that 52,000 graduates with expired or expiring PGWPs could benefit from this new public policy.
What is PGWP?
A Post-Graduation work permit (PGWP) is a written authorization provided to international students who complete their graduation from Canadian colleges or universities. A post-graduation work permit in Canada allows the holder to take up employment opportunities and work in whichever field they like. A work permit is usually offered for a duration of three years and the duration of a work permit depends on the length of the study program. Post-Graduation Work permits are issued only once per person.