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Federal Government Announces a 2-Year Cap on International Student Permits

Federal Government Announces a 2-Year Cap on International Student Permits

The federal government has imposed a two-year cap on international student permit applications, expecting around 360,000 approved study permits, reflecting a 35% decrease from 2023. Individual provincial and territorial caps have been established, weighted by population, which will result in more significant decreases in provinces like Ontario that have welcomed a larger share of international students in the past.  Effective January 22nd, 2024, all study permit applications submitted to the federal government must include an attestation letter from a province or territory. Provinces and territories are expected to establish this process no later than March 31, 2024.  

Furthermore, changes in eligibility criteria for the Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) will be implemented. Starting September 1st, 2024, international students attending a private college that has been licensed to deliver public college curriculum will no longer qualify for the PGWP. In addition, graduates of master’s and short-graduate level programs can now apply for a 3-year work permit. The government has stated that this adjustment is meant to address the previous limitation where the PGWP duration was tied solely to the length of the study program, restricting work experience for master’s degree holders.   

TIAO is in close communication with post-secondary partners to assess the impact of the policy changes.  

If your business or organization will be adversely impacted by the international student permit cap, please let us know by emailing Alexander Miceli, Manager of Policy and Government Affairs, at  

If you would like to learn more about the federal cap, please click the following link.  

 January 24, 2024