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A Brief Summary of Canada’s Economy in Q3
As the third economic quarter is coming to an end, Canadian companies are thrilled to
see the foreign investment numbers come in, at $858M USD. In sum, deals and dollars
invested into Canadian companies seem to have skyrocketed, almost doubling the first
and second quarters of the year combined, the highest amount of investments in two
years.
This sudden interest in Canadian companies sparks the following question: Why was
this quarter so successful? Well, the sectors that received the most investments are
the following: Internet ($247M USD), healthcare ($169M USD), mobile and
telecommunications ($131M USD), electronics ($101M USD), computer hardware and
services ($124M USD), and industries ($21M USD). However, the superstars this
quarter, under the Internet sector, are Canadian Artificial Intelligence companies,
receiving $191M USD in financing, across 22 deals, and these keep growing as we
enter the fourth quarter, a record year of funding through three quarters. A close
second, fintech companies, have received $200M across 27 deals.
This quarter, seed stage investments dropped from 51% in the last quarter to 32%,
early stage grew from 21% to 27%, expansion stage 16% to 21%, and finally, later
stages saw a slight growth from 4% to 5%. Seed stage investments are the lowest in
over two years, meaning that investors were more likely to invest in more established
companies. This is not surprising, as most AI and fintech companies have been
established for several years, allowing for more innovation to arise from investments.
The current top AI companies are Element AI, Vicarious, and Numenta, and the top
fintech companies are Shopify, Financeit, Zafin, Blockstream, Verafin, SnapFinancial,
and Fundthrough.
Currently, AI companies are working on projects mainly targeted towards
corporations, start-ups and other similar companies. Combining the popularity and
growth of the tech field, this specific audience as well as the investments, this field is
expanding by the minute. Clearly, Canada has caught up to the tech revolution, and as
more Canadian universities are expanding computer science programs focused on
forward thinking, internet entrepreneurship is at an all-time high, so if you’re
thinking to invest, the time is now.
Trump & Trudeau talk NAFTA

We predicted, many months ago, that President Trump might just take “white-out” to
references of Mexico in the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA),
emphasizing that his gripe is not with Canada, but only with Mexico. Let’s re-assess
where things stand now, given recent talks between Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau
and President Trump in Washington about the future of NAFTA.
Since the beginning of his presidency, President Trump has been quite vocal about his
disdain for NAFTA, a treaty enacted in 1994 allowing the U.S., Canada and Mexico to
trade and work in the three North American countries more smoothly and with fewer
regulations. President Trump, however, finds great injustice in the NAFTA deal, as he
states that the U.S. has been standing on the losing side of the game, and that Mexico
is the overall winner. One of his claims is that American companies are moving their
industries to Mexico in order to pay less for both supplies for their products, as well as
for labour. Trump’s plans with NAFTA have been hard to follow, from an ultimate
destruction, to tariffs posed on Mexico.
Recently, though, the Trump administration has concretized their plans for NAFTA,
stating that the renegotiations of the deal had to be completed by December, and
that Trump was favoring a bilateral deal, between Canada and the U.S., excluding
Mexico completely. Prime Minister Trudeau is open to the bilateral deal, but has made
it clear that he believes that, as is, NAFTA has been incredibly beneficial to all
parties.
The bilateral deal between Canada and the U.S. actually has a precedent: The Canada
U.S. Free Trade Agreement (USFTA) of 1987, which was directly superseded by NAFTA.
The specific NAFTA agreement details were already laid out in the CUSFTA,
theoretically smoothing out the transition on paper. However, in reality, the direct
ties the U.S. and Canada have to Mexico are deeply engrained: In 2016, nearly 5
million U.S. jobs were dependent on trade with Mexico, and the two-way trade
between Canada and Mexico for both nations amounted to $20 billion USD last year.In
sum, pulling out of a well-established regional trade such as this one will take much
more than negotiations, as millions of jobs and a large amount of capital are on the
line. We will simply have to wait until December to find out the final results of the
negotiations, NAFTA or not.
Expansion of the Definition of “Dependent Children” Under Canadian Immigration Law

On October 24, 2017, the Canadian government chose to legally change the definition
of dependents from children aged “under 19” to “under 22”. This move is intended to
allow more families to be reunited by the means of family sponsorships, and for more
newcomers to be given the chance to migrate to Canada with more family members.
The change applies to all new immigration applications filed on or after October 24th.
Moreover, in order to level the playing field, the Minister of Immigration in Canada has
passed a public policy allowing for the addition of sponsorship for some children under
22, whose parents had applications in process between May 3rd and October 27th. This
public policy was in part created to lower the amount of Humanitarian and
Compassionate Grounds applications, otherwise seen as the only stream that would
allow children aged 19 to 21 to be added to the applications for immigration to
Canada after October 24th. This particular public policy, however, only pertains to
children, and not spouses or common law partners; thus, if an applicant wishes to add
their spouse to the application, they must do it before the initial filing.
In order to benefit from this public policy, parents must notify the department of
their situation by January 31st, 2018.
Alberta’s Express Entry Program
If you are interested in moving to Alberta, Canada, you might have a better chance to
do so now than you did four months ago. The Express Entry provincial stream,
initiated in 2014, was created in order to make it easier for desired immigration
applicants to apply directly to their province of choice. If selected by the Express
Entry process, the applicant first receives an Invitation To Apply (ITA), and if followed
through, has the chance to be selected for Canadian Permanent Residence for the
province of their choice.
However, the application is not made for everyone, as the applicant’s chance of
migrating to Canada depends on a points system. Applicants are judged on several
factors, including their education level, English/French language proficiency, work
experience in Canada, education in Canada, etc.
Indeed, the Express Entry Points minimum requirement, calculated with the
Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), has dropped two points since its last draw (last
draw was 436 CRS points). Prior to the last October 18 draw, the Alberta CRS cut-off
ranged around the high 430s. On October 4th, the CRS cut-off was set to 438; however,
on October 18th, it dropped two full points. This fact, however, did not produce more
ITAs. In fact, on October 4th, a total of 2,801 ITAs were sent out, compared to 2,757
on October 18th. This means that more applicants with lower points applied in
October, giving Alberta less leeway with its targeted applicants. This is arguably a
favorable thing for prospective applicants who did not previously meet Alberta’s cutoff
threshold.

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