ARCHIVED — Vol. 147, No. 10 — May 8, 2013

Registration

SI/2013-48 May 8, 2013

PROTECTING CANADA’S IMMIGRATION SYSTEM ACT

Order Fixing April 29, 2013 as the Day on which Certain Provisions of the Act Come into Force

P.C. 2013-416 April 25, 2013

His Excellency the Governor General in Council, on the recommendation of the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, pursuant to subsection 85(1) of the Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act, chapter 17 of the Statutes of Canada, 2012, fixes April 29, 2013 as the day on which sections 4 and 6, subsection 9(2) and sections 30, 47 and 78 of that Act come into force.

EXPLANATORY NOTE

(This note is not part of the Order.)

Proposal

Pursuant to section 85 of the Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act (the Act)assented to on June 28, 2012, this Order in Council brings into force sections 4 and 6, subsection 9(2), and sections 30, 47, and 78 on April 29, 2013. These sections amend the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and the Department of Citizenship and Immigration Act.

Objective

This Order brings into force sections of the Act regarding biometric information and the authority of the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration (the Minister) to provide services to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and services on behalf of a foreign government.

Bringing these sections of the Act into force will allow the Government to make regulations to collect biometric information from certain applicants as part of the visa, study permit, and work permit application process. It will also formally identify the CBSA in the Department of Citizenship and Immigration Act. Finally, it would allow the Minister to provide to foreign governments, if requested in the future, services for the purposes of the administration and enforcement of their immigration laws.

Background

These sections amend the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act to
  • Establish regulatory-making authority for the implementation of biometric screening in Canada’s temporary resident immigration program.
  • Provide authority to create regulations providing for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to retain, use, disclose, and dispose of biometric information collected under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act for the purposes of enforcing any law of Canada or of a province.
  • Provide an exemption from the application of the User Fees Act to the biometrics fee to be set in regulations.
  • Provide authority to create regulations for the disclosure of information collected on behalf of a foreign government, during the provisions of services to that foreign government, as authorized under the Department of Citizenship and Immigration Act.
These sections also amend the Department of Citizenship and Immigration Act to
  • Provide authority to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration to enter into agreements and arrangements to provide services to a foreign government for the purposes of the administration and enforcement of their immigration laws.
  • Provide authority for the provision of services to the CBSA. The CBSA is not formally identified in the Department of Citizenship and Immigration Act as it was not established as an agency at the time that Act was originally drafted; this amendment updates the Act in that respect.

Implications

This Order in Council will bring into force legislative provisions that set out the framework authorities that allow the Government of Canada to require and collect biometric information from certain temporary resident applicants. Budget 2008 allocated $174 million over five years and $53 million ongoing to introduce biometric screening in Canada’s temporary resident immigration program.

Consultation

The Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration conducted two weeks of hearings on the Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act and heard from over two dozen witnesses, including representatives from many stakeholder organizations.

Furthermore, as part of the planning for the introduction of biometric screening in Canada’s temporary resident immigration program, Citizenship and Immigration Canada has, since 2009, initiated and conducted in-person consultations with a number of organizations with mandates relating to immigration, security, privacy, the facilitation of trade, and tourism, and the attraction of foreign students.

Departmental contact

For more information, please contact

Chris Gregory
Director
Identity Management and Information Sharing
Citizenship and Immigration Canada
Telephone: 613-957-3347