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Canada: The rising star on the immigration horizon!

Once considered the pinnacle of success, the American Dream appears to be slipping further and further out of immigrants’ reach. Things haven’t been too rosy across the rest of the globe either, between the refugee crisis, Brexit and the subsequent rise of xenophobia. One underdog that has quickly become the safe haven for those dreaming of a better life is Canada, where the province of Québec offers a popular investment immigration program.

From free education to universal healthcare and a smattering of benefits, the Great White North has quickly become the destination of choice for many immigrants. This is especially true of Indians, who have found the diversity and standard of living of the USA, with the added benefits of public welfare, in its northern neighbour.

The Québec Immigrant Investor Program (QIIP) is fairly similar to the US’ EB-5 investment-based immigration visa, with a few important differences – the invested amount (CAD 1,200,000 for a five-year term) is guaranteed by the government. The investor is required to have experience in business management, and as also in the USA, must be able to prove that the funds he/she is investing have been acquired legally.

While the North American nations’ immigration investment options have a lot in common, one of the most crucial differences is the area of residence. While the USA permits investors to live and invest anywhere in the country, Canadian law requires investors to live in the province where they have invested.

Also unlike the EB-5, the time taken for visa issuance does not differ by nationality – there is a standard wait time that averages close to three years. However, applicants to this program must ensure that they submit their applications through a qualified broker that has been allotted a quota by the Government of Québec. These quotas are extremely limited, and are only allotted to genuine investment representatives with demonstrated credibility and expertise. So, pick wisely and don’t forget to do your due diligence before you begin this process.