What is the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program?

Julia Hornstein
Published: January 17, 2023

British Columbia is Canada’s westernmost province and home to the country’s third largest city, Vancouver. The province’s economy is reliant on a strong natural resources sector, which focuses on forestry and mining.

Discover if You Are Eligible for Canadian Immigration

If you wish to immigrate to British Columbia, there are three options within the Provincial Nominee Program:

  • Skills Immigration Stream
  • Express Entry British Columbia Stream
  • Entrepreneur Immigration

Skills Immigration Stream

There are many categories under the Skills Immigration Stream for skilled workers, healthcare professionals, international graduates, postgraduates, and semi-skilled workers. These categories include:

  • The Skilled Worker Category: this category is for individuals who have received an eligible job offer in a skilled occupation.
  • Healthcare Professional Category: this category is for individuals with experience and eligible job offers as physicians, nurses, or allied health professionals. There are 11 qualifying health occupations.
  • International Graduate Category: This category is for individuals who have graduated from an eligible Canadian university or college in the last three years and who have a job offer from a BC employer.
  • International Post Graduate Category: This category is for individuals who have graduated from a Masters or Doctorate program in the natural, applied or health sciences from an eligible educational institution in British Columbia. No job offer is required under this category.
  • Entry-Level and Semi-Skilled Worker Category: This category is for workers in entry-level or semi-skilled positions in tourism, hospitality, food processing or long-haul trucking. Individuals may also be eligible if they are in entry-level or semi-skilled positions living and working in the Northeast Development Region of British Columbia.

Express Entry British Columbia

Express Entry BC aligns with the federal governments Express Entry immigration system, which manages permanent resident applications. Many PNP streams also use the Express Entry system, and these are called “enhanced streams”.

Express Entry gives immigration candidates a score based on the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), based on multiple factors such as their age, education, work experience and language ability. Candidates with the highest score are invited to apply for permanent residence. Express Entry candidates who receive a provincial nomination from BC are awarded an extra 600 CRS points, basically guaranteeing an Invitation to Apply for permanent residence in the next Express Entry draw.

The following Skills Immigration Categories may be processed through Express Entry British Columbia:

  • Skilled Worker Category
  • Health Care Professional Category
  • International Graduate Category
  • International Post-Graduate Category

Entrepreneur Immigration

As an entrepreneur, you may immigrate to British Columbia through three options:

  • Entrepreneur Immigration – Base Category: this category is for senior managers or business owners who plan to invest in a proposed business in British Columbia.
  • Entrepreneur Immigration – Regional Pilot: this category is for international entrepreneurs looking to establish a new business in a small community in British Columbia.
  • Strategic Projects Category: this category allows foreign-controlled companies to set up an operation in British Columbia. Up to five key managerial, professional or technical staff members can be nominated for permanent residence in the province.

It is important to choose the stream that is right for you based on your specific situation. An experienced immigration attorney can help you choose the stream that is right for you. Cohen Immigration Law’s team of lawyers and professionals will work to provide as much assistance as possible in submitting a PNP application.

Discover if You Are Eligible for Canadian Immigration

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