TORONTO — Last week, The Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, announced that international graduates with a recently expired or expiring post-graduation work permit (PGWP) will qualify for an additional or extended work permit to stay longer and gain additional work experience for up to 18 months. The PGWP Program allows international graduates to obtain an open work permit to gain valuable Canadian work experience.
Starting April 6, 2023, these measures will allow PGWP holders who wish to stay longer to opt in to a facilitative process to extend their work permit and will allow Canada to retain high-skilled talent.
Foreign nationals whose PGWP has already expired in 2023 and those who were eligible for the 2022 PGWP facilitative measure will also have the opportunity to apply for an additional 18-month work permit. Those with expired work permits will be able to restore their status, even if they are beyond the 90-day restoration period, and will receive an interim work authorization while awaiting processing of their new work-permit application.
A PGWP is typically not extendable. PGWP holders who want to extend their stay in Canada as a worker are usually expected to apply for another type of work permit as their PGWP expires. Public policies previously adopted in 2021 and 2022 provided the opportunity for an additional work permit for those with expiring PGWPs.
“We need to use every tool in our toolbox to support employers who continue to face challenges in hiring the workers they need to grow,” says Fraser. “At the same time, we’re providing international graduates whose work permit is expiring or has expired with some additional time to stay in Canada to gain valuable work experience and potentially qualify to become a permanent resident.”
PGWP holders who are eligible for the facilitative process will soon receive messages about logging into their online IRCC Secure Account, starting April 6, 2023, to opt in and update key personal information.