Canadian bill to hit most would-be immigrants Back   Home  
AS CANADA embraced a new immigration law effective December 17, more than 170,000 applicants, including 3,000 from the UAE, will be hit by changes introduced by the Bill C-11 in the Canadian parliament.

Two prominent immigration lawyers of Dubai - Sam Bayat of Canadian Legal Services and Brian Tefler, Managing Director ISIS International Management Consultants - feel that the new law will change the rules and regulations governing the application assessment and evaluation system.

"The law targets four major areas: application assessment, immigration card, occupation category list and place of filing the application," Mr Sam Bayat told Khaleej Timesyesterday.

The law, which is expected to come into force on June 28 next year, lays down an entirely new set of evaluation and assessment criterion by increasing the pass marks ceiling from 70 to 80.

With the introduction of the new procedure, the emphasis will be on quality of immigrants and not the quantity as it seeks to remove occupation categories of applicants and form a broad-based platform to encourage only those with higher education and trade skills.

"The new regulations will in effect dismiss a vast majority of the present 170,000 applicants as the law is being implemented retroactively," said Brian Tefler.

"Under the new law, virtually everybody will be eligible to apply as it does not bar any category but there will be few applicants who would be able to touch the ceiling of 80 pass marks," said Mr Tefler yesterday.

"Though in a way it will create a level-playing field but it will not allow everybody to enter Canada. The Canadian immigration department is keen to clear the backlog of 175,000 applications and my feeling is that most of these applicants will get a regret letter as after December 17, they will start assessing applications on 75 marks rather than 80 and by the end of June they will switch to 80-mark ceiling," said Mr Tefler.

Apart from the pass marks ceiling, the new law also doubles the amount of money an applicant has to register before he gets his landing card.

For a family with three children, the amount they have to take to Canada has been increased from Canadian $13,000 to Canadian $27,805. The new law also introduces a new ID card for the successful applicant instead of landing paper method which was prone to fraud.

The new card, valid for five years, has a lot of security features and is readable by the machine. The law also stipulates that a two-year stay in Canada is mandatory after a person gets the residency card.

"The new law will phase out under-employment in Canada and will definitely discourage the labour and unskilled migration to Canada," said Mr Tefler. "My understanding is that the Canadians don't want unemployed or under-employed workers now because there are already plenty of them there," said the lawyer.

The new law also makes it mandatory for an applicant to apply for the Canadian immigration from the place of residency contrary to previous rule which allowed an applicant to apply from whereever in the world he wanted to.

Sam Bayat said that with the passage of new law certain communities and classes will find it more difficult to get into Canada in future. "The immigration criterion has become harder and certain communities will definitely be on a receiving end of the law."

"By removing the previous occupation category list and by replacing it with a negative occupation list, the Canadian government is clearly targeting a skilled, English-speaking immigration population which is effectively employed," said Mr Bayat.

"Certainly it will be a big disappointment for the applicants who have not reached interview stage and had applied under the previous law. But I think the Canadian immigration is changing the rules due to huge backlog and in order to get quality emigrant force," said Mr Bayat. The new immigration law can be accessed on web site
Sent by Mr.K.H.Reddy