05 March 2009

Canada closes its 2009 youth visa programme for young Irish travellers

Young Irish travellers looking to apply for the Under 35 programme will no longer be able to in 2009.

The programme, which allows Irish nationals under the age of 35 to live in and travel Canada with a Canadian work permit for up to 12 months with multiple entries, has been closed until next year because all 2,000 places in the programme have been taken by eager travellers.

According to The Herald, Dearbhla O'Brien, the commercial director of USIT, said there is no indication from the Canadian Government as to whether the programme would be reopened in 2009, but that by December they would be processing applications for the 2010 intake.

Meanwhile, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, Jason Kenney told Indopia reporters that the number of permanent Canadian visas issued in 2009 would remain at the same levels unless the global financial crisis becomes irrevocably damaging. 

"Our economy is also impacted by the global slowdown but we will not be reducing the number of immigrants this year because of it," Mr Kenney said.

He also confirmed Canada's labour market is remaining resilient and in need of hundreds of thousands of international workers to fuel its growth, despite a 6.7 per cent national unemployment rate.

"If we find downturn is deepened then we will certainly look at modifying the immigration policy to deal with it," he added.

On 28th November 2008, Minister Kenney announced that the Government would raise immigration levels of 2009 to allow between 240,000 and 265,000 permanent residents. 

The Canadian Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people apply for Canada visa and immigration services.


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