Canada is extending the deadline to apply and expanding eligibility to Hong Kong residents who have graduated within the past ten years from a post-secondary learning institution in Canada or abroad.
The extended deadline for eligible Hong Kong residents to apply for an open work permit is February 7, 2025. Under this policy, spouses or common–law partners and dependent children are also eligible to apply for a study or work permit. On February 8, 2021, Hong Kong residents were allowed to apply for open work permits valid for up to 3 years.
Sean Fraser, Minister for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship in a statement today in Scarborough, ON, said “Canada will continue to support the many meaningful exchanges between Canada and Hong Kong while standing up for the people of Hong Kong.”
The measures apply to Hong Kong residents who hold a Hong Kong Special Administrative Region or British National (Overseas) passport. This aligns with Canada’s recently released Indo-Pacific Strategy.
Those at risk of persecution who have fled to another country may also be eligible under Canada’s existing resettlement programs, including Private Sponsorship of Refugees Program and the Government Assisted Refugees Program.
Jean Yip, Member of Parliament for Scarborough-Agincourt said “Canada remains steadfast in its commitment to supporting the rights and freedoms of individuals around the globe.”
Han Dong, Member of Parliament for Don Valley North welcomed the decision to extend and expand the pathway program. “I know that as the demand for these visas continues to grow, today’s announcement will ensure that Hong Kong residents who share Canada’s values of freedom and democracy will continue to be able to seek opportunities to settle and succeed in Canada.”
Anna Victoria Wong, Executive Director, Community Family Services of Ontario said that the policy update would import talents that are ready, willing , and able to contribute to Canadian economy.
Canada had expressed concern over the deteriorating human rights situation in Hong Kong following their new National Security Law.