Acquiring a business immigration visa requires thorough research into the immigration laws of the country in which an entrepreneur hopes to work. Each country sets its own immigration standards to attract foreign investment that will benefit its economy. In some regions, an immigrant must have sufficient cash to make a minimum investment when starting a new company or investing in an established firm. An immigration attorney or agent might be helpful to a business immigrant looking to process an immigrant visa application.
A business immigrant might also want to investigate the types of skills a country desires and weigh those requirements against his or her own. Professional standards differ by region, along with educational preferences in some places. Generally, if a person possesses experience the country needs, obtaining a business immigration visa might be easier.
In the United States, a limited number of business immigration visas are granted each year for professional individuals with special knowledge or abilities. For those without higher education, a temporary work permit can be obtained if a business is willing to sponsor the immigrant. Investors coming to the U.S. need to show they have cash to invest in a new business or to support the expansion of an existing operation. Visas typically impose time limits, but they usually can be renewed with approval.
In addition, some countries require that you speak their language before granting a visa to operate a business. New Zealand, for example, requires a proficiency in English, which is shown through language testing. This country also considers the applicant’s health status and character for certain visas. An applicant’s business plan must show the business immigrant understands the economic climate in New Zealand and explain how his or her investment will benefit the country.
Prospective immigrant business owners, managers or investors in Canada face substantial financial criteria in some business immigration categories. The Canadian government requires that the applicant’s net worth meet minimum limits, along with minimum investment guidelines. The business immigration applicant must demonstrate that he or she will provide jobs to Canadians as part of the immigration process, and that his or her prior business endeavors were successful.
Most countries allow business immigration for a short period of time to attend seminars or training courses. These visas typically do not permit the holder to perform any work while in the country. Similarly, retirees who can show they have adequate funds to support themselves and their dependents may apply for business immigrant status. This can also apply to self-employed immigrants in some regions.