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Our Ontario-based company conducts business in several countries around the world, including in China, Korea, the United States and Germany. We have several foreign workers in Canada from various countries, as well. We are organizing a large event to bring key people from our various offices to Toronto for a three-day conference in July, 2012. Several of the foreign managers will be asked to give speeches and conduct seminars during the conference, and we were wondering if there would be any issue with that. Would this be considered work that requires a work permit?
The people entering Canada to attend the conference would simply be considered business visitors. For those who are giving speeches, conducting seminars or workshops, or giving corporate training, they are exempt from obtaining a work permit pursuant to section 186(j) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations, as long as the event last no longer than five days. If on other occasions, there will be a longer duration in Canada, you may still be able to enter without a work permit, depending on the circumstances. It is a good idea to seek legal advice well in advance.