Should You Immigrate to Canada or the United States of America? Pros and Cons
Due to the governmental reform of the Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) program in Canada, there was a decrease in TFW applications in 2014 by up to 74%. The Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) attributed the decrease to a success of the reforms in giving priority to the Canadian workforce. Other industry and immigration professionals, however, argued that the reforms contradicted the government’s provisions for protecting employers, foreign worker investment and that it would affect future recruitment of Canadians. The differing opinions notwithstanding, the reforms were implemented and TFW based immigration into Canada went on a decline.
On the other hand, the US, a country built by immigrants, continues to be among one of the world’s most popular destinations for immigrants. The newcomers have varying reasons for immigration. These include a search for job opportunities and alternative career possibilities. There are those in search for a safe haven, running away from the conflict in their countries, while others want to bring up their kids in a better environment; access to better educational and work opportunities. Besides, there are those who are attracted by better health facilities and care.
Immigration has been ongoing for a long time and thus there are those people who might be drawn in by family relations. Some people have family members already settled in the US and they may wish to immigrate and move in with them. The family relation may also be that of marriage, with one of the spouse already a US resident, while the other wants to join him or her, instead of having to visit now and then as a student, employee or for leisure.
The various reasons for immigration call for different legal processes and paperwork. For example, one may have to get a student visa if going to study and a green card if going to work, or a work visa that differs with the industry and kind of work.
Whatever the situation, immigration is a major boost to a country’s economy and culture and stimulates innovation, increased productivity, as well as trade ties. Immigrants make a country more culturally diverse and give it exposure to the ever-evolving ethnocultural realities.
One of the advantages of Canadian immigration is the ease of obtaining permanent residency as long as one is adequately skilled. The TFW program through the Canadian Experience Class provides workers with a gateway to Canadian citizenship after one year of work based residency in Canada. The program enables both the employers with foreign staff to upgrade them to citizens and for an employee to become a permanent resident or citizen. However, as it is presently, to attain permanent residency, the immigrant worker needs to be highly skilled as the government tries to restrict low skilled immigrants. In fact, going by the fact that only highly skilled workers are accepted into the TFW, it turns out that anyone in the program can apply for permanent residency
At 7.3 million immigrants in a population of 35 million, Canada has the world’s second largest proportion of immigrants. In 2014, Canada was listed as the 6th best in the world in high standards of living and 8th in per capita income. The United Nations also ranked her 8th in the list of the world’s most peaceful countries. An immigrant and subsequent citizen is set to benefit from all these privileges.
Canada is also one of the best places for business and entrepreneurship as a foreigner. In fact, they have an innovative and unique start-up visa for immigrant entrepreneurs that links them to expert established private corporates in their area of business. This is followed by permanent residency.
Forbes also lists Canada as the G-20’s best country for business ahead of the USA. It also boasts of a low tax regime and low business-related costs. According to KPMG, Canada is also the G-7’s best country in tax competitiveness and its R&D excellence makes it ideal for building a new business. Overall, Canada is better for foreigners than the US when it comes to both their prosperity and happiness.
If you love nature’s beauty and its people, then Canada is the place to be. Canada has a cleaner environment since the Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s takes environmental preservation seriously. Being an environmentalist himself, he has made great strides to ensure that the citizens are in a safer and healthier environment. In addition, they might be just across the border, but Canadians are more hospitable than Americans by far. So you are likely to make more great friends in Canada. Canadians are also less violent.
Canada is a resource economy. The country is blessed with several natural resources such as fossil fuels, gems, wood, lumber, metals among others. Thus if you wish to settle down permanently and build your house, then building materials for a new house or repair are cheap and abundant.
One of the disadvantages of life in Canada compared to the US is the harsh weather. Canada is thousands of miles closer to the North Pole compared to the US and therefore winters there especially in the cities to the north of the country can be more biting to an immigrant.
Another difference is the job opportunities and salaries. Being an economy that is about a tenth of the size of the US economy, there are fewer opportunities for employment in Canada and the salaries are also lower on average. However, life is also cheaper in Canada compared to the US so you will spend less.
If don’t like too much government control over your life, then Canada is not your place. The government literally controls every aspect of Canadians’ daily life; from the schools they attend to the fast food joints they check in. Several citizens lament that there are so many rules to contend with to the point that they feel the government is micromanaging the citizens. However, this has made Canada one of the safest and fairest countries to live in.
Overall, it is clear that there are more pros than cons of immigrating to Canada than the US. The legal process is easier; it’s easier to start a business as well as fairness in employment and social programs. Canada is a multicultural country that embraces new people and so you will enjoy your stay.