CHRIS Alexander, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, announced on Monday that in April 2014 approximately 95 percent of the visitor visas issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada were Multiple-Entry Visas (MEVs).
MEVs are a fast and convenient option allowing qualified visitors to enter and exit Canada for six months at a time for up to 10 years. Last month alone, Canada issued more than 95,000 MEVs to individuals coming to Canada on vacation or to spend time with family.
The government has been making changes to facilitate legitimate travel, including investing $42 million over two years to improve the way Canada processes temporary resident applications. This investment, which began in 2013, aims to meet the growing demand to process applications for those who want to come to Canada temporarily.
Alexander highlighted the success of Canada’s MEV program while announcing a new facilitative visa program for Mexican travellers called CAN+ (“Can-plus”). Under the CAN+ program Mexican visitors, who have previously travelled to Canada or the United States in the last 10 years, will be processed much more quickly and will not need to provide as many supporting documents. CAN+ is one of a number of facilitative programs available to make it easier and faster for Mexican citizens to visit Canada.
* Canada continues to be a preferred destination for visitors and business travellers alike. In 2013, Canada issued 975,181 visitor visas.
* The MEV is particularly popular among visitors from China, India and Mexico who hold 10-year passports and have been eligible to apply for a 10-year visa.
* The demand for MEVs has grown: between 2002 and 2013, the number of MEVs issued more than doubled from more than 150,000 in 2002 to more than 486,000 in 2013.
* In April 2014, CIC issued more than 100,000 visitor visas, of which more than 95,000 were MEVs.
* In February 2014, the government reduced the fee for MEVs from CAD$150 to $100.
* CAN+ is one of a number of facilitative programs available to make it easier and faster for Mexican citizens to come to Canada and to improve the efficiency of legitimate travel.
“Our government remains committed to attracting visitors and facilitating legitimate trade and travel. We’re proud to have welcomed a record number of visitors who are clearly benefiting from the flexibility and convenience of the Multiple-Entry Visa,” said Alexander.