The latest news on Global Employee Mobility - June 2, 2017June 2nd, 2017
NEWSLETTER: GLOBAL EMPLOYEE MOBILITY
2017 US Canadian Summit in Montréal: Expanding your business
Is your business considering expansion either south or north of the Canada/US border? If so, the upcoming 2017 US Canadian Summit, held on June 15th, will no doubt provide food for thought.
The Quebec Chapter of the American Chamber of Commerce in Canada (AmCham), in collaboration with well-established accounting firms, has convened a panel of experts to provide audience members with a better understanding of what expanding to a foreign territory such as Canada or the US entails. Moderated by William Polushin, Founder and President of Amaxis, the panel will feature Stéphanie Murphy, Project Manager, Americas Asia Division at Investissement Québec, and Marc Bélanger, Partner at DS Avocats, as well as one of BCF’s very own partners, Julie Lessard, Co-Chair of AmCham.
The panel discussion will be held in English with a Q&A in both French and English, and will be followed with a networking cocktail. Places are limited - purchase your tickets here.
Canada: Age of dependent child increased
The Canadian government has announced that as of October 24, regulatory changes related to the maximum age of a dependent child will be raised from “under 19” to “under 22”.
This change will apply to new applications for all immigration programs under Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, including for refugees. The age limit will help to enhance Canada’s economy by making it a destination of choice for skilled immigrants who want to keep their families together.
The change is also consistent with the global socioeconomic trend of children staying home longer, to pursue their post-secondary education for instance. The change would allow older immigrant children, aged 19 to 21, to study in Canada thereby boosting the pool of applicants from which Canadian post-secondary schools can draw talented students.
United States: NAFTA renegotiation close at hand
On May 18th, the Trump administration formally notified Congress of its intent to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement. Though a widely popular campaign promise, this new development has unsettled US companies who have built their businesses around the trade deal’s provisions. Congress has 90 days to consult with the administration about its goals, as negotiations with Canada and Mexico should start as early as August 16th.
US Trade Representative Robert E. Lighthizer noted that the deal is in need of updates, as it was negotiated over 23 years ago, and that the administration hopes to improve and modernize the deal rather than scrap it altogether. Digital, environmental and intellectual-property provisions are among those that should see significant changes, even though trade experts point out that they are incorporated in the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
The US trade representative is required by Congress to publish more detailed objectives at least 30 days before formal negotiations begin.
This article tackles many aspects of this renegotiation. Contact our Global Employee Mobility specialists to find out how this might affect your business.
Canada’s privacy czar raises flag over planned U.S. border password searches
Privacy commissioner Daniel Therrien says Canadian privacy could be at risk. In February, U.S. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly suggested that American officials could ask people entering the U.S. about their Internet browsing history and passwords.
In response, the Commons public safety committee is aiming to subject U.S. searches at preclearance facilities to the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
However, Therrien notes that the immunity provisions for U.S. border officers may make such a bill practically unenforceable. In some cases, Canadians may need to choose between “accepting a search without grounds or forgoing their wish to travel to the U.S.”
Nevertheless, Canada and the U.S. have agreed to expand preclearance to certain airports and rail services, aiming to strengthen security while respecting each country’s sovereignty.
India: e-Tourist Visa now available to Canadian citizens
During his visit to Canada this past April, Indian Prime Minister Narenda Modi announced that the e-Tourist Visa (eTV) will now be made available to Canadian citizens. Visitors to India can apply twice a year online for visits not exceeding 30 days.
The eTV is available to Canadian citizens whose sole objective of visiting India is recreation, sightseeing, casual visits to meet friends or relatives, short duration medical treatment or casual business visits, and no other purpose or activity.
Online application for eTV needs to be filed a minimum of 4 days in advance of the date of arrival. The eTV will be sent by email. The applicant will then have to carry a printed copy of the email approval until the formal visa is affixed on his/her passport on arrival in designated international airports.
Tourism in the US has drastically declined since Trump was elected
There has been a decline in US international tourism, beginning a month before the election. While tourism in the rest of the world as increased 6% from October to March, tourism-related traffic fell an average of 11% in the U.S. during the same period.
Analysts from Foursquare, a location intelligence company, link the drop to Trump’s “America first rhetoric,” as well as strict immigration policies.
U.S. 'might' expand laptop ban to all international flights
In an interview with Fox News, Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly noted that the U.S. “might” expand a ban, intended to curb terrorist attacks, that requires travelers to check in any electronics bigger than a smartphone.
The ban currently applies to approximately 50 flights per day from 10 cities, mostly in the Middle East. Earlier this month, reports came out indicating that the Trump administration was considering broadening the ban to include flights from the EU, affecting trans-Atlantic routes.
U.S. officials have said that the initial ban was not based on any specific threat, and Kelly explained that there are longstanding concerns about extremists targeting U.S. carriers.
Trump admin gives embassies broad new discretion to limit travelers
In an attempt to maintain and improve robust screening standards for visa applicants, the State Department has released new guidelines for screening measure to embassies worldwide.
These measures give consular officers broad discretion to demand more background material about an applicant’s family, including where they’ve lived, worked, and their social media usage.
The State Department emphasizes however that "visas may not be denied on the basis of race religion, ethnicity, national origin, political views, gender or sexual orientation.