British Columbia

British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program

The BC Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP) is an economic immigration program designed to help B.C. meet its dynamic labour market and economic development priorities. The program allows B.C. to select foreign workers and international graduates who have the skills and experience to contribute to B.C.’s economy. The BC PNP also selects entrepreneur who are ready to invest in our economy and create jobs for Canadian citizens and permanent residents.

The BC PNP is operated by the Province of B.C. in partnership with the federal government through Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). The BC PNP assesses applications and nominates candidates for permanent residence. CIC makes the final decision on each application and issues permanent resident visas to successful applicants (provincial nominees).The British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BCPNP) aims to accelerate the process for those wishing to obtain Canadian permanent resident status.

The BC Provincial Nominee Program (BCPNP) is comprised of two streams:
  • Skilled Immigration Stream.
  • Business Immigration Stream.
Skilled Immigration Stream

There are five components in this category:

Skilled Workers

To apply under this component the following requirements must be met:

  • Candidate must have been offered a job by a B.C. employer in a skilled occupation.
  • BCPNP must determine that there is a positive demand and/or outlook for the particular occupation.
  • The wage offered must be comparable to what is usually offered in B.C. for the occupation.
  • The candidate must have the qualifications and experience required to perform the job offered.
  • The offer of employment must be written and meet certain criteria, including being for a full time and indeterminate position.
  • The employer must meet certain criteria, such as having a place of business in the province.
  • The candidate must be deemed to have the ability to become economically established in B.C.

Entry-Level and Semi-Skilled Workers

This category is aimed at temporary foreign workers already in B.C. working in the following occupations: hospitality/tourism services, long-haul trucking and food processing. The two year “Northeast Pilot Project” allows applications from a broader range of semi-skilled occupation based on the location of employment.

The requirements are as follows:

  • Job offer in a qualifying occupation in the Tourism/hospitality, long-haul trucking or food processing industries. (Other occupations under NOC Skill levels C and D may qualify if the employment is in the Northeast Development Region).
  • Candidate has been employed full time by the B.C. employer making the offer for at least 9 consecutive months.
  • Wages offered are comparable to prevalent wages for the occupation.
  • Candidate has completed 12 years of formal education.
  • Candidate meets any regulatory or licensing requirements for the position offered.
  • Candidate demonstrates basic proficiency in one of Canada’s official languages.
  • Employer meets certain criteria, such as having a place of business in the province.
  • Candidate is deemed to have the ability to become economically established in B.C.

International Graduates

This category is aimed at foreign nationals who have graduated from Canadian post-secondary institutions. The main requirements for candidates are:

  • To have obtained an eligible degree or diploma from a Canadian post-secondary institution following a program of at least 12 months of full time studies within the two years preceding application.
  • To have accepted an indeterminate full time job offer from a B.C. Employer for an occupation under NOC Skill Levels O, A, or B. Other occupations may be considered under certain circumstances.
  • Wages offered are equivalent to prevailing wages for the position in B.C.
  • The candidate must have the qualifications required to perform the job offered, but no previous experience is required.
  • The employer must meet certain criteria, such as having a place of business in the province.
  • The candidate must be deemed to have the ability to become economically established in B.C.

International Post-Graduates

This category allows certain graduates of B.C. post-secondary institution to settle in the province. No job offer is required to apply in this category. Successful applicants will meet the following requirements:

  • Completed an eligible Masters or Doctoral degree from a recognized post-secondary institution in B.C. in a designated field of study within the two years preceding their application.
  • Demonstrate their intention to settle in B.C.
  • Have the ability to become economically established in B.C.

Health Care Professionals

Applicants in this category can be nurse practitioners, registered nurses, psychiatric nurses, physicians or allied health professionals, recruited by provincial and regional health authorities administered through Health Match BC (a recruitment service funded by the provincial government) and who meet the following requirements:

  • Registered nurses, registered psychiatric nurses and nurse practitioners must have a full-time and indeterminate job offer from one of B.C.’s regional health authorities or the Provincial Health Services Authority, and be registered with the College of Registered Nurses of B.C. or with the College of Registered Psychiatric Nurses of B.C.
  • Physicians must be sponsored by one of B.C.’s regional health authorities or the Provincial Health Services Authority and have a positive assessment from their supervising physician attested by a letter from the College of Physicians and Surgeons of B.C.
  • Midwives must be registered with the College of Midwives of B.C. and have been accepted into an established practice group in B.C. for at least six months.
  • Allied health professionals must have a full-time indeterminate job offer from one of B.C.’s regional health authorities or the Provincial Health Services Authority and must be registered with the provincial licensing body that regulates their profession.
Business Immigrants

This category is designed to accelerate immigration for qualified entrepreneurs wishing to settle in B.C. and become Canadian permanent residents. They must establish a business which will provide significant economic benefits to the province. The PNP establishes nomination targets for the program and, as such, priority is given to candidates demonstrating the highest potential to create a successful business and to contribute economic benefits to the province. Currently, successful applicants must sign a performance agreement with the province. They are invited to B.C. on a work permit to establish their business and only nominated for permanent residence once the terms of the agreement have been met.

There are three categories of Business Immigrants, a $3000 processing fee being charged to candidates in each of the three categories.

Entrepreneur Category

Business candidates in this category must meet the following minimum criteria:

  • Demonstrate a personal net worth of at least $800,000.
  • Make a personal investment of at least $400 000 to establish or purchase and expand an eligible business in B.C.
  • Create at least three jobs for Canadian citizens or permanent residents.
  • Participate in the day-to-day management and direction or the business.
  • Sign a performance agreement with B.C. prior to nomination.
  • Candidates in the Entrepreneur category can sponsor a key staff member for Canadian permanent residence.

Regional Entrepreneur Category

Business candidates in this category must meet the following minimum criteria:

  • Demonstrate a personal net worth of at least $400,000.
  • Make a personal investment of at least $200,000 to establish or purchase and expand an eligible business in B.C. outside the Vancouver metropolitan area and the Abbotsford metropolitan area.
  • Create at least one new job for a Canadian citizen or permanent resident.
  • Participate in the day-to-day management and direction or the business.
  • Sign a performance agreement with B.C. prior to nomination.

Strategic Projects Category

This category assists foreign-controlled companies establishing an eligible business in B.C. with the timely entry of foreign key managerial, professional or technical staff who intend to become permanent residents of Canada and settle in B.C. The main requirement is that they must make a minimum equity investment of $500,000.