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What Is An Intra-Company Transfer

An intra-company transfer (ICT) is a process that allows employees of a multinational corporation to be transferred from one country to another within the same company. This type of transfer typically involves moving employees from their home country to a foreign country where the company has a subsidiary, branch, or office.
One of the prominent nations that offer this plan is Canada. IMP or International Mobility Programme, allows companies to temporarily transfer their highly skilled workers to work in Canada as an Intra-Company Transferee also known as the ICT Canada.

Any international company that has a branch or location in Canada can apply for their employee to be transferred to the Canadian branch as an ICT.
By applying for an intra-company transfer visa, the company as well as the employee does not need to apply for LMIA or LMIA Canada jobs as this transfer is an LMIA-exempt work permit. While the LMIA work process is quite helpful and easy to understand, the ICT allows for work permits for Canada which is exempted from the Labour Market Impact Assessment or LMIA. This allows for a lot of economic benefits to the company, the employee, and Canada itself.

Here are the major requirements that an employee and the company must fulfil while applying for an ICT programme or International Mobility Programme:

General Employee Requirements:

The employee is being transferred to the division as a senior manager, executive, or as a ‘specialised knowledge capacity’ person.
The employee has been employed by the company continuously whether in the form of payroll or anything else.
The employee is coming to Canada as a temporary measure only.
The employee agrees, approves, and fulfils all the immigration requirements that are necessary for temporary entry into Canada.
The employee holds a Canada Visa for a temporary stay.
The employee is currently working in an international company and wants to enter Canada as either a subsidiary, branch, parent or affiliate of the company.
The employee is moving to a company that has a qualifying relationship with the current company.
The employee is going to continue employment in the new company in a legitimate manner.

Company Requirements for Intra-Company Transfer

The company must hold a physical premise (secure) so that it can run a proper Canadian operation. This is especially relevant in the case of ‘specialised knowledge’. In special cases regarding executives and senior managers, it is okay if a physical address of a new start-up has not been secured yet.
The company must be able to show realistic plans to show that they will be hiring new staff for the smooth running of the operation.
The company must show financial ability to start the business in Canada and also pay the employees.
In the case of a transfer of managers or executives, the company must show that it is large (or will be large in the future) enough to support management or executive function.
In the case of the transfer of a specialised knowledge worker, the company must be able to show that the company is expected to do business.
The company must ensure that the work operations are directed and guided by the management in the Canadian branch or subsidiary.

Documentation Necessary for ICT Canada:

These are some of the major documents that are necessary to have a smooth ICT Canada:
Proof that the foreign national who is to be transferred is currently employed by a multinational company outside Canada.
Documents proving that the employee is currently seeking entry to work in either subsidiary, parent, affiliate, or branch of the company located in Canada.
Proof that the employee has been employed continuously as a full-time (and not as an accumulated part-time) employee on either contract or on payroll by a company that is situated outside Canada.
Proof proving that the employee is holding a similar position for at least one year.
An outline of the position, duties, perks, etc. of the managerial or executive position or the position requiring specialised knowledge. This includes the job description, job title, place in the organisation, etc.
If the employee is seeking entry on the basis of the ‘specialised knowledge’ category, proof proves that the employee indeed has such knowledge and that the position in Canada needs such knowledge.
An outline of the position in Canada including title, position, job description, place in the organization, etc.

Details related to the intended duration of stay in Canada.

The description of the relationship between enterprise in the foreign country and the enterprise in Canada. The officer may require tangible proof for the same.

Canada ICT Visa Processing Time

The overall process for ICT or Intra-Company Transfer Canada takes around 2 – 10 weeks. However, in special cases priority processing options are available.
People who are qualified for the 2-week processing time will be provided with the same within 2 weeks.
This priority method is reserved for visa-exempt countries.
Validity of Intra-Company Transfer Visa
The ICT work permit for Canada is valid for one year but can be renewed if the following conditions are met:
The new office has been staffed.
The foreign and Canadian enterprises still share a proper and qualifying relationship.
The new office must be dealing with the continuous provision of products, services, and goods for the past year.
Benefits of Intra-Company Transfers:
Here are some of the major and significant benefits that are associated with intra-company transfers. These may change and vary as per the country, specific policies, and regulations of the countries that are involved in the same. Some of the common benefits include:

Enhanced Career Opportunities:

Intra-Company Transfer allows employees to gain new experiences and international work, and also to develop a global mindset. This global mindset can then prove to be quite beneficial in their later career growth.
Employees may gain a chance to travel and work in different countries which will allow them to learn more about different cultures, different markets, and different business practices, thus helping them to increase the horizons of their skills. This can also enhance their career prospects in not only their current company but also in the later stages of their career.

Knowledge Transfer and Skills Development:

Intra-Company Transfer allows for an exchange of expertise, knowledge, and various business practices between nations and companies.
Employees get a chance to share their knowledge, skills, and experiences with other people and vice versa.
The practice of sharing ideas, expertise, skills, and knowledge can foster an environment of cross-cultural learning and can also lead to the development of performance and improved business operations.

Talent Retention:

Intra-Company Transfer can serve as a potent tool for the retention of talent as it provides employees with various chances for development and growth without them having to leave the company.
By giving the employees a chance of joining international assignments, companies can continue to retain superior employees who are looking for new experiences and new challenges.


It has been observed that in many cases, ICT can prove to be a lot more cost-effective and efficient to companies than hiring a local worker in a foreign nation.
Companies can use the experience and expertise of their current employees and thus can avoid hiring and training new employees, thus saving a lot of money.
Companies may also be able to get some tax benefits and other similar financial advantages as offered by certain countries to attract foreign talent.

Global Mobility Along with Business Expansion:

Intra-Company Transfer can also help companies to enhance their global mobility and expand their business.
It enables companies to send employees with proper knowledge and skills to locations where they are needed including expanding or even setting up business in other nations.
It also allows companies to explore new markets and create a presence in different regions.
The company can also become more flexible and change according to the needs and requirements of the time.

Diversity and Cultural Exchange:

Intra-Company Transfer also allows for the promotion of diversity and cultural exchange within the company.
Employees who are transferred to different nations are exposed to different cultures as well as different methods of doing business and related ideas.
This can create a more diverse, inclusive, and improved work environment which in turn can increase innovation, teamwork, and creativity.

To conclude, intra-company transfers have a lot of significant benefits not just for the employees but the companies and often the host nations as well. It should be remembered that this programme is generally governed by many different regulations and legal requirements, so you must take various things such as immigration laws, planning, and the well-being of the employee into consideration.

How Can Vazir Group Help You?

With expert teams who are trained to solve almost all problems related to immigration, Vazir Group can help you to learn more about Intra-Company Transfer and how you as an employee or a company can use it.
With extra focus on Canada, the Vazir Group also offers advice and help related to other Canadian visas and immigration-related queries.


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