About Canada's Free Trade Agreements

Last updated: 18 June 2021

How to work in canada under a free trade agreement FTA

In order to create the most favorable conditions for Canadian business to compete internationally, Canada has entered into bilateral and multilateral Free Trade Agreements (FTA). Most FTAs to which Canada is a signatory contain provisions to facilitate the mobility of temporary business persons to Canada.

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Generally, foreign workers eligible under a FTA require a work permit to work in Canada, but are exempt from obtaining a Labor Market Impact assessment (LMIA), making the process of obtaining a work permit seamless, inexpensive, and quick.

The Canada-United States-Mexico (CUSMA) agreement is the largest FTA to which Canada is a party, and is similar to several Free Trade Agreements to which Canada is a party:

The Canada-European Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), along with the Chile, Peru, Columbia and Korea FTAs are akin to CUSMA and all contain provisions that grant temporary entry to 4 categories of business persons: business visitors, professionals, intra-company transferees, and traders and investors.

Under the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS), professionals are authorized to enter under either as professionals or intra-company transferees.

Entry requirements vary significantly from one category to another. However, the same LMIA exemption applies.

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Would you like to enter Canada to work on a temporary basis? The Campbell Cohen immigration law firm can help. Campbell Cohen offers over 45 years of expertise assisting workers and employers navigate Canadian immigration regulations.

Please complete this short form to submit your work permit query directly to a Campbell Cohen immigration lawyer. Our Work Permit Team is here to help: