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Canada Issues Record Number of Visitor Visas and Study Permits for Ukraine in 2012

Citizenship and Immigration Canada, Minister’s Office

News release

Kyiv, Ukraine, March 4, 2013

Canada issued a record number of visas for Ukrainian nationals in 2012, Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney announced today.

“We plan to grow the economy and create more jobs by attracting an increasing number of visitors and the world’s best and brightest talent to Canada,” said Minister Kenney. “For this reason, we strive to issue visas and permits as quickly as possible to facilitate travel for immigrants, visitors and students.”

Minister Kenney speaking with Yaroslav, a welding student in Kiev. Yaroslav will be immigrating to Canada soon, thanks to new immigration reforms.

Canada issued a record 9,000 visitor visas to Ukrainian applicants in 2012, an increase of 67 percent compared to 2004. The approval rate for temporary resident visas in 2012 was 85 percent. Since 2006, the approval rate for temporary visas for Ukrainian nationals has averaged 83 percent, which is significantly higher than the average approval rate of only 63 percent between 2000 and 2005.

The record 787 study permits approved in 2012 represents an increase of 496 percent since 2004.

This significant increase in each of these categories reaffirms Canada as a top destination of choice for visitors and students from Ukraine.

The Government continues to move toward a fast and flexible immigration system that avoids backlogs and processes applications in a timely manner.

For example, in 2008, the government introduced the Canadian Experience Class, a path to permanent residency for international student graduate whose Canadian education and work experience helps ensure they are set for success in Canada’s economy.

In addition, in July 2011, the duration of multiple-entry visas was extended from 5 years to 10 years. This allows visitors to enter and exit Canada for up to six months at a time over 10 years. Furthermore, parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens and permanent residents are eligible to apply for the new Parent and Grandparent Super Visa, which is also valid for up to 10 years and allows parents and grandparents to come to Canada for up to 24 months at a time.

To further facilitate applicants who want to come to Canada, it is expected that two visa application centres will open in Ukraine this year. Visa application centres provide administrative support services to applicants before, during and after their application is assessed by a CIC officer. This helps reduce unnecessary delays due to incomplete applications.

“For over a century, Canada has benefited from the talent and hard work of newcomers from Ukraine,” Minister Kenney said. “Over 1.2 million Canadians can trace their ancestry to Ukraine, and now a growing number of Ukrainian citizens are able to visit family and friends in Canada, study at Canadian colleges and universities, or immigrate to Canada as permanent residents.”

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