Canada expands visa services with new VAC in Portugal

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VAC in Portugal

Canada’s Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, Marc Miller, announced the inauguration of a new Canada VAC in Portugal. Scheduled to commence operations on February 26, 2024, this development marks a pivotal expansion in the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) network, now spanning 163 locations across 110 countries worldwide.

VACs play a pivotal role in streamlining the visa application process by facilitating document submission, ensuring secure transmission to IRCC offices, and providing essential biometric services. With the opening of the Lisbon VAC, Canadian visa applicants, particularly from Portugal, gain unprecedented accessibility to pursue opportunities in Canada, whether for travel, study, or work.

One of the primary objectives behind this expansion is to foster stronger bonds between Canada and Portugal, thereby fortifying the longstanding diplomatic relations shared between the two nations. By eliminating the need for Portuguese applicants to travel outside their home country, the Lisbon VAC not only enhances cost efficiency but also prioritizes client satisfaction by offering a seamless application experience.

Moreover, the benefits extend beyond Portuguese citizens residing in Portugal. Non-Portuguese individuals in Portugal seeking Canadian visas can also leverage the services provided by the Lisbon VAC, further promoting inclusivity and accessibility in the visa application process.

Appointments for visa application submissions and biometric services at the Lisbon VAC can be scheduled starting February 12, 2024, providing ample time for prospective applicants to plan and prepare for their Canadian endeavors.

The relationship between Canada and Portugal is underpinned by various bilateral agreements, including a noteworthy youth mobility arrangement. Celebrating 70 years of diplomatic relations in 2022, both countries offer youth aged 18 to 35 the opportunity to work and travel for up to 24 months, fostering cultural exchange and mutual understanding.

According to the 2021 Census, approximately 448,000 individuals of Portuguese origin currently reside in Canada, underscoring the significance of this demographic in the bilateral relationship between the two nations.

The establishment of the Canada Visa Application Center in Lisbon, Portugal, signifies a proactive step towards enhancing accessibility, efficiency, and bilateral relations between Canada and Portugal. As both countries continue to strengthen their ties, prospective applicants can look forward to a smoother and more accessible visa application process, opening doors to new opportunities and experiences on both sides of the Atlantic.

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