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Global Talent Stream: Canada’s Scheme to Bring Highly Skilled Tech Talent to the Country

Wed Nov 09, 2022

Canada now boasts of over a million job vacancies, as per the latest report. The vacancies are spread across the nation and its varied employment sectors. This is what prompted the country to design diverse PR programs to enable foreign talents to come to the country and work for its employers.

While some are working exceptionally well, some are not.

However, one such program that works extremely well for both foreign immigrants and employers in Canada is the Global Talent Stream.

So, what is the Global Talent Stream?

In a nutshell, it is an immigration program that allows companies to bring foreign talent and enable them to work with highly inventive businesses in Canada. The GTS program is a part of the ever-famous Temporary Foreign Worker Program.

What it does specifically is that it makes the entire process of work permit and temporary resident visa applications faster.

The attraction of this scheme is that the applicants can start working in Canada within two weeks of application, approximately.

The country’s tech landscape is set to benefit extremely well from this program as it enables businesses to gain access to the global tech talent pool quickly.

Exemptions available in the program

There are two provisions that enable foreign talents to enter Canada without having a work permit in the country under this scheme.

These exemptions are as given below;

Exemption #1: ‘Highly-skilled workers in ‘Skill Type 0’ or ‘Skill Level A’ occupations of the NOC’ will not need a work permit under GTS. However, they must have been employed for 15 days over six months or 30 days over a year in Canada.

Exemption #2: Research professionals coming to Canada will not also need a work permit if they have been working for 120 days over a year on ‘any research projects at a degree-granting institute that is publicly funded or an affiliated institute’.

Understanding the Global Talent Scheme

There are two distinct classifications under this scheme:

Category A

This category includes all high-growth companies that are referred to the GTS program by one of the designated referral partners in Canada (except in Quebec). There are 40 such referral partners. These high-growth companies must also demonstrate the need for hiring such specialized talent to be included.

For those working in Quebec, they have a different list of designated partners. The list can be found on the official website of the concerned ministry in Quebec.

Category B

This category includes those businesses that are looking to employ specific jobs, as mentioned by the Global Talent Occupations List. This list is periodically updated and changed as per the changing dynamics of the industry.

Some of the jobs listed on the list are;

·         Website developers and designers

·         Computer network technicians

·         Digital media and design professionals

·         Computer and information system professionals

If you'd like to check out the full list, you can find the same here.

What about the wages in the GTS program?

The wages that employers are required to pay to successful applicants are one of the major highlights of this program. Employers are required to meet a certain wage level when they hire foreign tech talent.

According to the scheme, the employer must pay the highest wage, whichever is applicable from the following;

The average wage of the occupation according to the Job Bank of the Government of Canada.

The same wage range that the employer pays to the current employees working in the same job and location and with the same experience and skills.

The minimum wage floor, as stipulated by the GTO List for Category B.

The current hourly rate for the occupation, amounting to no less than CAD 80,000. This is exclusively for the initial two positions requested to be hired in Category A.

How the GTS benefits the country and its people?

One of the first advantages of the GTS program for the country and its people is that it requires employers to create the Labor Market Benefits Plan, as established according to the Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC).

The ESDC explains how the hiring of foreign talent will benefit the workforce in Canada and the labor market in the country.

In addition to this, these plans will also talk about the activities that employers must invest in to encourage the creation of jobs and necessary skills. This is expected to help Canadians, who are the primary beneficiaries of this program.

Simply put, the employers in Category A must;

Encourage the creation of new jobs indirectly or directly for the citizens of the country and permanent residents.

Employers in Category B must;

Invest more in training programs to improve the skills of the Canadian workforce.

Along with these, companies in both these categories are required to perform required business functions to fulfill two additional benefits for the labor market in Canada.

These are;

The knowledge acquired must be transferred to the workforce and the permanent residents in Canada.

The performance of the business must be improved to help the Canadian economy.

You can find the complete list of activities on the official website of the Government of Canada


·         To give some ideas, here are a few before you visit the site:

·         Hire more citizens or permanent residents in Canada

·         Increase the revenue of the business and, thus, investments

·         Train existing workers in new technologies and techniques

·         Create paid internship or co-op programs for local students

Summing up

It is important to remember that employers that want to hire a workforce with these two categories are required to commit themselves to one of the primary benefits in addition to fulfilling the complementary benefits.

It must also be noted that when a business takes advantage of the GTS program, it may also be under the monitoring of the required department for the entire duration of the hire’s tenure at the company.

This is done to ensure the compliance of the business with the Labor Market Benefits Plan and assess the success of the GTS program in general.