CANADA – New Permanent Residence Programs for Essential Workers and International Graduates, Including Essential Workers in National Occupation Classification (NOC) C or D Occupations, placing Canada as Top Work Destination against U.S.


UK – India added to England’s Red List since Friday 23rd April

GREECE – Digital Nomads, Invitations are being prepared for employees of companies seating abroad

UAE – Dubai Steps up for Freelancers


CANADA – New Permanent Residence Programs for Essential Workers and International Graduates, Including Essential Workers in National Occupation Classification (NOC) C or D Occupations

On 14th April 2021, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced extremely generous and unprecedented new permanent residence programs for essential workers and international graduates in Canada.

IRCC will begin to accept applications under the following three (3) program streams on May 6th 2021:

  1. Temporary workers in health care;
  2. Temporary workers in other selected “essential occupations”; and
  3. International students who graduated from a Canadian institution

Applicable Criteria: To qualify under the temporary worker streams, applicants must have at least one year of work experience in Canada, in an eligible occupation. To qualify for the international student stream, applicants must have completed an eligible program of study at a Canadian post-secondary institution within the last four (4) years. Applicants must be currently residing in Canada and either have valid temporary resident status or be eligible for restoration of status.

Established Quota: Each of these programs has a limited quota of applications that will be accepted, so applicants who meet the criteria should apply as soon as possible once the programs open on May 6th.

Deadline: IRCC will accept applications under these categories until November 5th 2021 or until the quotas are met. Three additional programs with no intake cap have been launched for bilingual applicants.

Benefit: Given the extensive scope of occupations included, the new programs provide an excellent opportunity for temporary workers in Canada to obtain permanent resident status. The inclusion of Essential Workers Occupations into the National Occupation Classification (NOC) C and D occupations provides a pathway to permanent residence for workers who are excluded from the Canadian Experience Class category. These programs also provide an opportunity to obtain permanent resident status for temporary workers in Canada who may not score high enough under the Express Entry system to be selected, due to factors such as age, level of education or language proficiency.

Examples of the eligible categories included into NOC C and D occupations:

Temporary Workers in Health Care:

3011 Nursing co-ordinators and supervisors

3012 Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses

3111 Specialist physicians

3112 General practitioners and family physicians

Temporary Workers in other Essential Occupations:

7201 Contractors and supervisors, machining, metal forming, shaping and erecting trades and related occupations

7202 Contractors and supervisors, electrical trades and telecommunications occupations

7241 Electricians (except industrial and power system)

7243 Power system electricians

7244 Electrical power line and cable workers

7246 Telecommunications installation and repair workers

8615 Oil and gas drilling, servicing and related labourers

Process remains the same: The application process, however, will involve the usual complex screening and verification requirements based on regular immigration law, policy and case law, in addition to the new policy requirements for this program.


UK – India added to England’s Red List since 4am on Friday 23rd April 

Effective since 4am GMT 23rd April anyone arriving to England who has been in India during the past ten days will be refused entry.

Who is exempted? The exemption applicable to British citizens or to those with rights of residence in the UK remains in place. However, those who can still enter to the UK from India or have stayed in India during the last 10 days before entering to England, have to pay for a mandatory ten day stay in a Government designated quarantine hotel.

Since Friday, the red list countries attracting the same conditions has been updated as follows:

  • Angola
  • Argentina
  • Bangladesh
  • Bolivia
  • Botswana
  • Brazil
  • Burundi
  • Cape Verde
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Ecuador
  • Eswatini
  • Ethiopia
  • French Guiana
  • Guyana
  • India (Added to the list from 4am, Friday 23 April)
  • Kenya
  • Lesotho
  • Malawi
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Panama
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Qatar
  • Rwanda
  • Seychelles
  • Somalia
  • South Africa
  • Suriname
  • Tanzania
  • United Arab Emirates (UAE)
  • Uruguay
  • Venezuela
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Countries following the steps of England for Travellers from India: Following the same steps of England, Canada and Singapore imposed bans to travellers from India.

Canada: A 30 days ban on direct passenger flights from India and Pakistan has been in place since April 23rd.

Singapore: Singaporean borders have been tightened by banning all travellers from India since Saturday 24th April 2021. This change has been enforced in preparation to Singapore joining Australia, New Zealand travel bubble in the near future.

GREECE – Digital Nomads, Invitations are being prepared for employees of companies seating abroad.

The Greek government, targeting employees of companies registered abroad, seeks to offer a special type of immigration type, allowing people to live in Greece while working remotely for a company abroad with a one-year residence permit (“Digital Visa”) with the option of extending for up to two years. This same right will also be granted to dependants of Digital Visa’s holders. With this change, Greece aims to attract people working for companies located in the U.K. and U.S.

Countries Offering Immigration Options for Digital Nomads: Once the implementation of the Digital Visa for Greece is completed, the country will join a list of countries that have in place special immigration options for Digital Nomads such as Antigua, Barbados, Bermuda, Croatia, Estonia, Georgia, and more recently the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Good weather, beautiful landscapes, quality of live (Healthcare, traffic, internet connection, entertainment) and the existence of an already established community of Digital Nomads are among the characteristics shared by these countries.

UAE – Like Dubai, the UAE steps up for Freelancers with the Remote Working Visa

The UAE government has initiated a series of programmes and incentives to drive growth in the freelancing sector including lower license fees, entrepreneurial visas, virtual trade channels and a remote working visa.

The Remote Working Visa implemented on March 2021 allows foreign nationals to live and work from anywhere in the United Arab Emirates, and not just from Dubai, for one year while remaining employed by their home country employer. This Remote Working Visa is available for employees and business owners.

Eligibility: Employees must have with a one-year contract and a minimum of US$5,000 per month salary. Business owners must own the company for one year or more and have an average monthly income of US$5,000 per month.

The steps taken by the UAE government are intended to contribute to the UAE’s position as a key global hub for investment and progress; and they are welcome news to those who see the value in a new way of working.

For more information on MSI’s Immigration Services please contact us at

Information for this update has been provided by our global network of immigration partners. Given the nature of and speed at which online communications are developed, we will make every effort to maintain the accuracy of the information provided. However, materials contained in this alert are subject to change at any time without any notice.