Portuguese and Canadian flag, a passport in the background

The aim is to “offer the Portuguese greater flexibility and accessibility to visit, study or work in Canada”. The center will start operating on February 26th of this year.

Canada will open a visa application center in Lisbon, offering Portuguese citizens “greater flexibility and accessibility to visit, study and work in the country,” the Canadian government has announced.

“The opening of a visa application center in Lisbon will offer the Portuguese greater flexibility and accessibility to visit, study or work in Canada,” said the Ministry of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship in a statement sent to the Lusa news agency.

The new center, located in Campo Grande, Lisbon, will begin operating on February 26 of this year.

The center will also open the door to “new opportunities for social, economic and cultural exchange”, benefiting both countries. The Portuguese already benefit from “visa-free travel to Canada for up to six months”. “The people-to-people ties between Canada and Portugal have become stronger over time. Today these ties are sustained by a vibrant Canadian community of Portuguese origin,” said the minister with responsibility for immigration, Marc Miller.

The new center will make it even easier to apply “for a longer period of time” while contributing to the Canadian economy and “deepening ties” between the two countries, adds Miller.

The visa application centers are operated by private companies contracted by the Canadian government. Their primary purpose is to receive documents required for visa applications, transmit this information securely to the offices of Immigration Canada and have biometric information collection services.

The centers’ services are available by phone, email or in person, to answer questions in local languages and help ensure that processes are completed. There are currently 163 centers located in 110 countries.

In 2022, Canada and Portugal celebrated 70 years of diplomatic relations. According to the 2021 Canadian census, around 448,000 people of Portuguese origin lived in Canada.

Related article: More than 20% of the population born in Portugal has emigrated. Low wages

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