British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) for skilled workers

The BC Provincial Nominee Program offers three general paths to becoming a permanent resident in B.C.:

  1. Skills Immigration
  2. Express Entry BC
  3. Entrepreneur Immigration

Each stream contains different categories candidates may apply under, depending on their National Occupational Classification skill level, job, or international student status.

Skills Immigration stream

The BC PNP Skills Immigration stream is an economic immigration option intended for people with the skills, experience and qualifications needed by British Columbia employers. This stream is designed for individuals who are committed to living and working in B.C. and becoming permanent residents of Canada.

The Skills Immigration stream is for skilled and semi-skilled workers in high-demand occupations in B.C. It uses a points-based invitation system. The process involves registering and applying online for the BC PNP and a paper application process for permanent residency.

You may not need prior work experience for some categories. Skilled workers may have work experience from abroad. Entry Level and Semi-Skilled category applicants need B.C. work experience. Recent international graduates of a Canadian university or college may not need any work experience, depending on the job being offered.

To be eligible for the program, you will need to meet the criteria in one of the following categories:

  • Skills Immigration – Skilled Worker – managers, professionals and skilled tradespeople
  • Skills Immigration – Healthcare Professional – physicians, registered nurses and other allied health care workers employed with provincial health authorities
  • Skills Immigration – International Graduate – with a degree or diploma from a Canadian college or university
  • Skills Immigration – International Post-Graduate – with a master’s or doctoral degree in the natural, applied or health sciences from a B.C. university. Note that for this category only, a job offer is not required
  • Skills Immigration- Entry Level and Semi-Skilled –  (including employment in the Northeast Development Region of B.C.) – workers in tourism/hospitality, food processing and long-haul trucking, OR entry level and semi-skilled workers who are residing in the Northeast Development Region of the province

Express Entry BC stream

The Express Entry BC stream is a faster way for eligible skilled workers to immigrate to B.C.  Candidates must also qualify for a federal economic immigration program. It uses a points-based invitation system, and is an entirely web-based registration and application process for both the BC PNP and permanent residency process.

Candidates do not need BC work experience but must have relevant work experience and meet other requirements such as on education and language. They must also meet the minimum criteria  for one of the four (4) categories of this stream:

  1. Skilled Worker
  2. Healthcare Professional
  3. International Graduate
  4. International Post graduate

Candidates must also meet the minimum criteria for one of the following federal economic immigration programs:

  • Federal Skilled Worker Program
  • Federal Skilled Trades Program
  • Canadian Experience Class

Entrepreneur Immigration

The BC PNP program also has a stream for Entrepreneur Immigration. This stream is for high net worth business people who can invest in and actively manage a valid business in B.C. It is a points-based system for applicants who must also have the required personal and investment funds. The province also has an option for companies looking to expand into B.C., and who need to get permanent residency for key employees. Learn more about BC Entrepreneur Immigration