Canada's controversial millionaire visa program is scrapped

February 14, 2014
millionaire visa program - Visareporter Canada News

Canada put an end to its contentious immigration program, which quite generously allowed wealthy nationals, including typically wealthy Chinese, to purchase permanent residency in the country.

This move will cancel almost 60,000 investor applications -- mostly those of the Chinese – who will have their fees refunded.

Because of its relaxed immigration rules, education system and generous publicly funded policies, Canada is the top choice for Chinese investor immigrants.

The existing Immigrant Investor Program requires an applicant to deposit about US$ 730,000 as a 5-year interest free loan to the government. It is a relatively risk free and a low-cost scheme compared to similar types of programs in the UK and US. Thus, in a way, it was the world’s popular and renowned wealth migration program. 
According to the SCMP, a local daily, the Canadian consulate office was flooded with thousands of applications from wealthy Chinese mainlanders. In the year 2012, the program and the accompanying situation went out of control and the consulate stopped accepting applications from the investors.

According to experts, Australia may gain from Canada’s decision. It has a similar ‘investor visa’ scheme that requires an investment of US$ 4.5 million into approved managed funds or local businesses.

“There is a desire among the wealthiest people who have accumulated considerable money to move it overseas, to get a foreign country passport as a form of security.  Maybe, they are concerned about the corruption wash out, apprehensive about the future and making use of it as a safety valve”, Mr. Vickers, a commentator said.

Senior economist at JP Morgan, Grace Ng, said that the population of China is so huge and so, even if a little portion of that is moving away, it will have a considerable impact on the remaining part of the world.

The government of Canada will replace the scrapped program with another one to attract experienced and quality immigrants which has as its basis, a new ‘Immigrant Investor Venture Capital Fund’. 

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