Canada will be opening up the International Experience Canada (IEC) pool for certain countries on March 1.
Those who are selected will be eligible to work in Canada. IEC is open to young adults who are citizens of foreign countries which have reciprocal agreements with Canada. The eligible age range depends on the country, but usually falls between 18 and 35 in some cases. Moreover, work permits under the IEC do not require a Labour Market Impact Assessment.
Normally, Working Holiday visa holders do not need a job offer to land in Canada, but that has changed due to travel restrictions. For now, everyone coming to Canada under the IEC needs a valid job offer, and a Letter of Introduction. They must also comply with the COVID-19 testing requirements, and mandatory quarantine.
2/3 Note: Only IEC participants with a POE Letter of Introduction and a valid job offer are eligible to travel to Canada at this time. They must be able to start their job as soon as they complete their quarantine. The start date on job offers should be checked before travel.
— IEC (@IEC_EIC) February 24, 2021
The following pools are scheduled to be open March 1. The quotas indicate how many profiles will be selected from the IEC pool for each country:
|Country||Working Holiday Quota||Young Professional Quota||International Co-op Quota|
Here is a brief overview of each IEC category.
The Working Holiday pathway normally allows participants to come to Canada without a job offer, and to work at any job they find here. Since the onset of COVID-19, however, participants must line up a job before coming to Canada.
Since participants under this program get an open work permit, they can work for any employer in Canada. It allows for a more customizable experience, as it is possible to change employers, or move locations with this permit.
The Young Professionals Pathway is designed to hone professional skills. Accordingly, participants must have a professional job offer in Canada that falls under National Occupation Classification (NOC) Skill Levels 0, A, or B.
The jobs must be payed and they cannot be self-employed. The work permit under this category is employer-specific, meaning the holder must stay with the employer named on the permit.
The International Co-op category is for students who need to do an internship or work placement in Canada to complete their studies.
Participants will have to stay with the same employer at the same location for the duration of their time in Canada.
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