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Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs)

Immigrate to Canada Through a Provincial Nominee Program

18 July 2016

Immigrate to Canada Through a Provincial Nominee Program
Business immigration stream Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) are offered by most provinces in Canada and allow expedited immigration processing for applicants through investment and business activity in that particular territory. Each province has its own selection criteria in order to benefit its economical and social needs both short and long term. Unlike business and investment immigration programs outside of Canada, the PNPs do require relevant prior business experience and require that the nominee is actively involved in the management of the business in the selected province.
Currently, Business stream PNPs are available in the following provinces: Nova Scotia, Ontario, New Brunswick, Manitoba, Yukon, Northwest Territories, Saskatchewan, British Columbia, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island. For the purpose of this post, however, we will highlight the details of only two of the most popular PNPs in Canada: Manitoba and British Columbia. Note that Quebec has its own special program with specific requirements that is apart from the PNPs. If you are interested in moving to Quebec, please see the Quebec Immigrant Investor Program.
The first step in a PNP application is for the application to be approved, or “nominated”, by the province in question. The application process is, for the most part, quick for the provincial programs. Once nomination is received, an applicant must proceed to submit a federal application for permanent residency which includes medical and security checks. It is Canada’s Federal government that approves the final admittance into the country. Some provinces assist the nominated individual in obtaining a work permit while their federal application is in process to allow the nominee to come to the province on an expedited basis.

Manitoba Business PNP
The Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program for Business attracts investors that intend to live in the province, as well as invest and run businesses in Manitoba that will benefit the province’s economy.
Requirements at a glance:
  • Minimum score of 60 on the Assessment Adaptability Matrix;
  • Minimum of 3 years of business ownership and senior-level management experience;
  • Minimum net worth of $350,000, legitimately acquired;
  • Provide a business plan for a viable business in Manitoba;
  • Invest $150,000 into an eligible existing business or new business;
  • Make a $100,000 deposit that will be returned to the applicant if the conditions of implementing their business plan after two years post-landing in Canada have been met. Failure to implement the business plan will result in the forfeiture of the deposit, however, the applicant’s Canadian immigrant status will remain.
Individuals interested in this program must first submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) through the Manitoba PNP online system. The EOI is not an application and does not require a fee or supporting documentation. It is a means by which the province can assess an individual’s eligibility for the program, and choose the most qualified (the highest scores) EOIs from the pool. Individuals whose EOIs are chosen will be issued a Letter of Advice to Apply (LAA), which requests that a complete application for nomination be submitted. The information in the application must be consistent with the information declared in the Expression of Interest.
The nomination application requires extensive proof of business experience, net worth, and business intent (including business plans). If an application is approved, applicants must sign a deposit agreement and make a deposit of $100,000, refundable if the agreement is fulfilled. Once nomination is received, applicants proceed to apply for permanent residency through the Federal Government of Canada. If approved, they can immigrate to Manitoba to put business plans into action. Nominees then have two years from the date they arrive in Manitoba to fulfill the conditions of their deposit agreement, otherwise, the government of Manitoba reserves the right to keep the deposit of $100,000.
Although an exploratory visit is not required, it is highly recommended. Not only will a visit boost an applicant’s score on the adaptability matrix, but it will also help an individual set up contacts and gather other information for their business model.
The Manitoba PNP for business program does not require applicants to arrive on a work visa before having their permanent residence approved. The two-year period to meet the deposit agreement terms only starts after arrival in Manitoba as a Canadian permanent resident.

British Columbia Business PNP
British Columbia’s Provincial Nominee Program for business allow applicants to obtain permanent residency by operating a business of significant interest to the province.
Requirements at a glance:
  • Minimum net worth of $600,000, legitimately acquired;
  • Relevant business and/or management experience;
  • Establish a new business or improve an existing business with an eligible minimum investment of $200,000;
  • The business must create at least 1 full-time job for a Canadian citizen or permanent resident;
Similar to Manitoba’s Expression of Interest, individuals interested in business immigration through BC PNP must first register online, and qualified entries will be submitted into a selection pool. From the pool of eligible candidates, the BC PNP invites only the most qualified candidates to apply for nomination. Applicants must document their net worth, business experience, and other adaptability factors in the nomination application, as well as provide a viable business plan.  
Once an application is approved, applicants are requested to sign a Performance Agreement which allows them to apply for a work permit for entry to Canada. The work permit allows applicants 20 months to implement their approved business plan in British Columbia. Residency requirements are to reside within 100km of the business, as well as to be in the province at least 75% of the time while on the work permit. If the conditions of the Performance Agreement are met 20 months after arrival in BC, applicants are then nominated for immigration to Canada. Applicants can apply for permanent residence in Canada with the federal government after receiving nomination from the province.

Final Note
The Provincial Nominee Programs are a great alternative to Federal business immigration programs for the purpose of immigrating to Canada. Once permanent resident status is achieved, individuals can enjoy all the same privileges as Canadian citizens, with the exception of voting. Citizenship can be obtained after residence requirements are met.
Due to the varied nature of the provincial programs, interested applicants are advised to conduct extensive research and work closely with experienced professionals when preparing an application. Our office has many years of experience dealing with provincial programs and we are here to help you become permanent residents of Canada. We have established trustworthy and essential contacts in each of the provinces that are ready to help you prepare and submit a PNP application with a high probability of success.
For a table comparing all PNP business programs, please click here.
Please fill out our Free Assessment, and find out if you qualify under any of the business immigration programs offered.


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