Immigration to Canada
WHO CAN APPLY
You may qualify as a business visitor if you are a foreign national who plans to visit Canada temporarily to look for new business opportunities, to invest or to advance existing business relationships.
If you are from a country that requires a visa to visit Canada, you must apply for a temporary resident visa just like any other temporary visitor to Canada. There is no separate application for business visitors. The temporary resident visa covers all visitors, including those in Canada on business.
Business visitors usually stay in Canada for a few days or a few weeks. To be considered a business visitor you must show that:
• you intend to stay for less than six months and do not plan to enter the Canadian labour market
• your main place of business and source of income is located outside Canada
• profits from your business will accrue outside Canada
• you can provide documents that support your application and
• you meet Canada’s basic entry requirements. You:
• have a valid travel document, such as a passport
• have enough money for your stay and to return home
• plan to leave Canada at the end of your visit and
• do not pose criminal, security or health risks to Canadians.
Cross-border business can include activities like:
• buying Canadian goods or services for a foreign business or government
• taking orders for goods or services
• attending meetings, conferences, conventions or trade fairs
• providing after-sales service (mainly supervision, not hands-on labour)
• being trained by a Canadian parent company you work for outside Canada
• training employees of a Canadian subsidiary of a foreign company or
• being trained by a Canadian company that has sold you equipment or services.
Under the North American Free Trade Agreement, a U.S. or Mexican national may also take part in other activities, such as research, marketing and general service.
If you plan to stay longer than six months or intend to work in Canada, you may be considered a temporary worker and have to apply for a work permit.
If you need a temporary resident visa, as a business visitor, you must submit certain documents when applying:
• a letter of invitation from your potential business partner in Canada
• 24-hour contact details for that person, and
• You may also need identification cards or proof of employment.
DO YOU NEED A MEDICAL EXAMINATION
If the duration of your visit is six months or less:
Generally, no medical examination is required.
However, a medical examination is required if you intend to work in an occupation in which the protection of public health is essential.
If the duration of your visit is more than six months:
You will need a medical examination if:
• you have resided or stayed temporarily for six or more consecutive months in a designated country or territory in the one year immediately preceding the date you sought entry into Canada. This applies even if you are a citizen of a country where you do not require a visa to enter Canada.
• you are coming to Canada to work in an occupation in which the protection of public health is essential.
ARRIVING AT THE CANADIAN BORDER
When you arrive in Canada, you will be greeted by an officer of the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). The CBSA is responsible for protecting the borders and points of entry to Canada. The CBSA officer will ask you the purpose of your visit and confirm that you meet the requirements for admission to Canada. This is standard for anyone entering Canada, whether you have a temporary resident visa or not.
You should have all relevant documents on hand to present to the officer when you arrive. These documents include, but are not limited to:
• a valid passport or travel document that will be valid until the end of your stay
• if applicable, a temporary resident visa
• letters of support from your parent company and a letter of invitation from the Canadian host business
• a copy of any contracts or bills to support your visit
• 24-hour contact details of your business host in Canada and
• proof that you have enough money for both your stay in Canada and your return home.
You will not be allowed into Canada if you give false or incomplete information, or if you do not satisfy the officer that you are eligible for entry into Canada. You will also have to satisfy the officer that you will leave Canada at the end of your authorized stay in Canada.