06 Feb, 2022
Canada immigration news: Applications are open for International Experience Canada (IEC) but current travel restrictions mean only fully-vaccinated participants will be able to travel, says Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
“We regularly invite eligible candidates from the IEC pools to apply for a work permit. These are called rounds of invitations,” notes IRCC on its website. “The number of candidates invited to apply during each round varies. Rounds will take place until there are no more spots available or the IEC season closes.”
Last year, foreign nationals had until Nov. 12 to submit profiles for the IEC, unless they had already received an Invitation to Apply (ITA) before the season closed or had already started their work permit application.
This year, Canadian immigration officials are reminding applicants to the program that any profiles they created during or after the season last year are still valid if they have not yet received an ITA.
“You do not need to create a new profile for the 2022 season,” the IRCC tweeted on Thursday.
The Canadian government is urging all participants in the program to stay up-to-date on Canada’s travel, testing and quarantine requirements by visiting its COVID-19 travel advisory website.
Under the IEC, Canadians aged 18 to 35 can live and work in one of almost 40 countries and young people from those countries can live and work in Canada.
|Costa Rica||South Korea||Spain|
|France||New Zealand||United Kingdom|
There are three categories under the IEC program: working holiday; international co-op; and young professionals.
Under the working holiday category, candidates receive open work permits that allow them to work anywhere in the host country. They do not have to have a job offer and can work for more than one employer while in the country.
Under the international co-op, or internship, category, students receive employer-specific work permits to gain experience in their field of study.
The work placement or internship must be a requirement for the course of study and so the work permits are employer-specific. These participants must work for the same employer in the same location for the entire duration of their stay.
The young professionals’ category allows participants to receive employer-specific work permits to gain targeted, professional work experience that is within their field of study or career path.
The job must be one that contributes to the participant’s professional development. The work permit given is employer specific.
In late 2020 Ottawa and the Italian government inked a deal to expand the IEC to allow young people in each country to work more often and for longer periods of time.
Through the IEC Youth Mobility Agreement, Canadian and Italian youth became be able to work and travel in one another’s countries for up to 12 months.
They can now also participate in the program twice, allowing them to work and travel in the other country for up to two years.
Under the current youth mobility agreements Canada has with 36 other countries and territories, most young adults from abroad can only stay in Canada for six months.
“We live in an increasingly interconnected world where innovation often comes from those who have travelled widely, who have an appreciation for other cultures, and whose eyes have been opened to new ideas, insights and ways of doing things,” said then Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino in making the announcement last year.
“This contributes to strengthening ties between Canada and Italy, and the diversity and economic strength of our two countries,” he said.
During the announcement of this latest agreement, Italian Foreign Affairs Minister Luigi Di Maio expressed his hope that the bilateral agreement would further strengthen the relationship between the two countries.
“This agreement, aimed at strengthening the exchange of experience and knowledge between Italian and Canadian citizens and at creating new opportunities for vocational training responds to a deeply felt need by today’s youth,” said Di Maio. “I am certain that it will help further strengthen the already excellent bilateral relations between Italy and Canada.