Canada Opens Visa Centre in Portugal

Canada Launches First Visa Application Centre in Portugal

Canada has announced the opening of its inaugural Visa Application Centre (VAC) in Portugal, marking a significant milestone in bilateral relations between the two countries. Scheduled to commence operations in Lisbon on February 26, 2024, the establishment of the VAC aims to streamline the Canadian visa application process for Portuguese citizens interested in traveling to Canada for various purposes.

Canada’s Initiative to Enhance Visa Services:

Managed by private entities contracted by the Canadian government, VACs play a crucial role in facilitating the visa application process. They accept and securely transmit essential documents to Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) offices, while also providing biometric collection services. The introduction of the Lisbon VAC eliminates the need for Portuguese applicants to travel abroad for visa procedures, thereby reducing costs and enhancing client service.

Bilateral Relations and Community Ties:

The decision to establish a VAC in Portugal underscores the deepening ties between Canada and Portugal, fueled by a vibrant Portuguese community in Canada and robust bilateral relations. With approximately 448,000 people of Portuguese origin residing in Canada, both countries celebrate 70 years of formal diplomatic relations in 2022. The new VAC signifies Canada’s commitment to strengthening these ties and fostering greater socio-economic and cultural exchanges between the two nations.

Benefits for Portuguese Citizens:

The opening of the Lisbon VAC offers Portuguese residents greater flexibility and accessibility to visit, study, or work in Canada. By providing comprehensive visa services locally, the VAC opens doors to new opportunities for social, economic, and cultural exchange, benefiting both countries. Immigration Minister Marc Miller emphasized the VAC’s role in improving visa processing efficiency and client service, enhancing the experience for Portuguese citizens seeking to explore opportunities in Canada.

Pathways to Permanent Residency:

For Portuguese individuals contemplating relocation to Canada, various immigration programs offer pathways to permanent residency. Programs such as the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) and the Express Entry system provide avenues for skilled workers to settle in Canada. Additionally, initiatives like the International Experience Canada (IEC) program offer youth opportunities for working holidays in Canada, fostering cross-cultural exchanges and enriching experiences.


The inauguration of the first-ever Canada Visa Application Centre in Portugal represents a significant step forward in enhancing visa services and strengthening bilateral relations between Canada and Portugal. With the Lisbon VAC now operational, Portuguese citizens have greater accessibility to explore opportunities in Canada, fostering deeper ties and mutual benefits for both nations. Canada’s commitment to facilitating visa processes and promoting socio-economic exchanges underscores its dedication to building bridges with global partners.

Canada has launched its inaugural Visa Application Centre in Portugal, marking a significant step in facilitating visa processes for Portuguese citizens interested in traveling to Canada.

The launch of Canada’s first Visa Application Centre in Portugal is noteworthy because it signifies a direct and convenient channel for Portuguese citizens to apply for visas to Canada, streamlining the application process and enhancing bilateral relations between the two countries.


The opening of the Visa Application Centre in Portugal offers numerous benefits to individuals seeking to travel to Canada, including easier access to visa application services, localized support, and enhanced efficiency in processing visa applications, ultimately facilitating smoother travel experiences.

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