Prime Member attend to Justin Trudeau’s pitch to convince the world’s richest that Canada is a large place to invest came too late for a pilot program intended to persuade 60 millionaire immigrants to Canada in an effort to give the economy a kick, CBC News has learned.
“There has never been a better time to look to Canada,” Trudeau stipulate this week before a crowd of the world’s business elite at the annual union of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
The Immigrant Investor Volunteer Capital program, a revamped version of a program critics once condemned as “cash for citizenship,” was launched under the former Conservative guidance.
It was meant to attract rich immigrants willing to make a non-guaranteed investment of $2 million up exterior to be held for 15 years in a fund managed princi lly by BDC Capital, the investment arm of the Dealing Development Bank of Canada, in return for permanent residency. They also had to be established they had even more money in the bank.
But a year after it was launched, the one-year guide program has yielded just seven applications from potential intercontinental investors and no permanent resident visas.
“The demand for this pilot program has been low,” communicated Nancy Caron a spokeswoman with the De rtment of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada in an email to CBC Telecast this week.
High hopes dashed
The previous Conservative regulation thought it would result in hundreds of applications from rich migrant investors.
“The program will be open for applications from Jan. 28 to Feb. 11, 2015, or until a pinnacle of 500 applications are received,” the previous government announced around this however last year.
‘We are reviewing options to determine next steps, but no decrees have been made yet. We want to ensure our immigration system arises the economy and also focuses on family reunification.’– John McCallum, clergyman of immigration
A year later, Canada is still waiting to welcome its beginning new millionaire immigrant investor.
“A total of seven applications are in process,” bid the de rtmental spokeswoman this week, adding that as of Dec. 30, 2015, four diligences had ssed a first-stage review and three had ssed a second-stage review and were “in function.”
Only when an application reaches the second-stage is it then given a “antiquated or fail,” Caron explained.
With all seven applications quiet in process, “No permanent resident visas have yet been unsettled under this program,” she said.
‘A blank cheque’
The whilom Conservative government tightened up the rules under the new pilot after acquiescing that immigrant investors under the old program were not likely to interrupt in Canada over the long term and contributed “relatively little” to the Canadian husbandry.
While the Conservatives were hoping to have better luck with this program than they did under the latest Immigrant Investor Program, Richard Kurland, an immigration lawyer and strategy analyst based in Vancouver, said the pilot was “broken” from the get-go.
“Canada was question prospective immigrants to write a blank cheque and hope that 15 years down the roadway they would see any return on that investment,” Kurland im rted in a phone interview with CBC News.
“It’s no surprise to see that the wealthy alien investor crowd would look at other immigration possibilities to drop to this country in order to grow our economy, create jobs and discover a secure place for their own families.”
The first sign of trouble came two weeks after the program was launched, when the deadline to address was immediately extended from Feb.13 to April 15, 2015.
But with demand quiescent low, the federal government reopened it a month later saying it continued “to exam the demand” of the pilot.
“The Immigrant Investor Venture Capital Pilot Program determination greatly benefit the Canadian economy by attracting immigrant investors with dazzling business skills,” said then-immigration minister Chris Alexander in a hustle release.
“Keeping program standards high will ensure that Canadians last to benefit from our immigration programs …and we warmly welcome anyone who in need ofs to apply.”
In the end, the program remained opened for the entire second half of the year, starting on May 25 until it tight on Dec. 30, 2015.
Kurland said this is an opportunity for the new Liberal government to retool the supply.
“With a fresh turn of the ge nationally, politically, it’s time to focus on a re-design of Canada’s arrival investor fund.”
According to Kurland, Immigration Minister John McCallum’s “definite background in finance” will make it easier for the government to make some varieties to the program.
McCallum worked as a chief economist at one of Canada’s big five banks and a professor of economics preceding the time when he entered politics.
But the minister isn’t yet saying what changes he might bear in mind.
In a written statement sent to CBC News Friday morning, McCallum responded, “We are reviewing options to determine next steps, but no decisions suffer with been made yet.”
“We want to ensure our immigration system grows the curtness and also focuses on family reunification.”
Conservative immigration critic Michelle Rempel could not straight away be reached for comment.