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  • Writer's pictureAlexander Healy

Expanding Work Opportunities for Canadian and British Youth

Updated: Aug 9, 2023

The governments of Canada and the United Kingdom are committed to providing Canadian and British youth with work opportunities that will empower them to achieve their full potential.

In July 2023, the Canadian Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship and the UK Minister of State for Immigration, announced the signing of a new Canada–UK Youth Mobility Arrangement.

Under this arrangement, more Canadian and British youth will benefit from reciprocal work opportunities in each other’s country for a longer period of time through International Experience Canada (IEC) and the UK’s Youth Mobility Scheme.

The new arrangement builds on an existing youth mobility partnership that began in 2008 and includes a number of improvements:

  • The eligibility age will expand to 18 to 35.

  • Two new streams — International Co-op (Internship) and Young Professionals — will be added to complement the existing 'Working Holiday' category for UK nationals visiting Canada.

  • The total period that participants will be able to stay will increase to 3 years.

International youth mobility helps young people explore new cultures, languages and societies, all while developing life skills and improving their job prospects for the future.

Canada and the UK anticipate implementing the new arrangement in 2024.


International Experience Canada (IEC) is a reciprocal program that allows Canadian and international youth to work and travel in each other’s country. The program has three categories:

  • Working Holiday participants receive an open work permit that allows them to work anywhere in the host country to support their travels.

  • International Co-op (internship) participants receive an employer-specific work permit that allows students to gain targeted experience in their field of study.

  • Young Professional participants receive an employer-specific work permit to gain targeted, professional work experience that is within their field of study or career path.

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