For many individuals, the opportunity to immigrate to the breathtaking west coast of Canada is a dream they aspire to fulfill. British Columbia, with its stunning natural landscapes and vibrant cities, offers a wealth of attractions for newcomers to the province.
In the past year alone, nearly 45,000 individuals chose British Columbia as their new home. If you are eager to be part of this growing number, let’s explore four recommended pathways to make your move to British Columbia a reality.
- Express Entry:
The Federal Skilled Worker program, a key component of the Express Entry system, does not require previous experience in Alberta or Canada. Candidates are assessed and ranked against one another using the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), which considers factors such as age, education, language proficiency, and employment experience.
Through regular Express Entry draws, the Canadian government extends invitations to the most competitive candidates to immigrate to the country. In 2023, approximately 83,000 Federal Skilled Workers are expected to be welcomed to Canada, representing an increase compared to previous years.
An advantage of the Express Entry system is that candidates can include their spouse or common-law partner, as well as dependent children, in the same application, ensuring a unified immigration process for the entire family
Swift and Popular Immigration Route Canada utilizes the efficient online Express Entry system to manage applications for its main economic immigration programs. With a service standard processing time of just 6 months, Express Entry is not only the fastest but also the most sought-after pathway to immigrate to British Columbia.
- British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP):
The BC PNP operates through various streams, each with its own distinct eligibility criteria and application process. For instance, if you aspire to work in the tech field in BC, you can apply through the BC PNP Tech stream. Since its establishment in 2017, this stream has successfully nominated over 6,000 tech workers for permanent residence. Tech-only draws conducted by the BC PNP Tech stream prioritize the selection of individuals from the tech sector.
The BC Skills Immigration Stream caters to skilled workers applying from outside of Canada. This stream encompasses multiple sub-streams, including BC Skilled Worker, BC Health Care Professionals, BC International Graduates, BC International Post-Graduate, and BC Entry-Level and Semi-Skilled Workers. While most of these sub-streams require applicants to have a job offer, an important distinction is that the job offer does not require a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) to be considered valid for this stream.
Candidates interested in BC Skills Immigration must register through BC PNP Online, the web portal that manages the Skills Immigration Registration System (SIRS). This efficient online system handles the intake, ranking, and processing of BC PNP applications.
By meeting the requirements and submitting a profile for any of these streams, candidates enter a pool of potential nominees, increasing their chances of receiving an invitation to apply for nomination.
Nominations for Permanent Residence The British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP) is a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) designed to nominate individuals for Canadian permanent residence specifically in British Columbia.
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- Studying in British Columbia:
Expanding Immigration Opportunities Completing post-secondary studies in Canada is an effective way to enhance your options for immigration to British Columbia. Candidates who successfully obtain a post-secondary credential in Canada enjoy a higher likelihood of receiving an invitation to apply for nomination through the Express Entry stream.
Furthermore, holding a Canadian educational credential grants additional points in the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), thereby increasing your competitiveness within the Express Entry pool.
Most international students who graduate from a Canadian post-secondary program are eligible to apply for a Post-Graduate Work Permit (PGWP). This permit allows international graduates to remain in Canada and work for up to three years, irrespective of the employer. Gaining Canadian work experience through the PGWP proves highly advantageous for permanent immigration, as it enhances applicants’ competitiveness within the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) category of Express Entry.
British Columbia is home to several prestigious universities, many of which rank among the top ten in Canada. If you have a desire to pursue higher education while improving your Canadian immigration prospects, studying in British Columbia presents a fantastic opportunity.
- Working in British Columbia:
Although obtaining a Canadian work permit can be challenging, there are options available for those aspiring to work in British Columbia.Firstly, securing a job offer from a British Columbian employer for a specialized position makes you eligible to apply for a work permit. To qualify, the employer must obtain a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), demonstrating that they could not find a suitable Canadian permanent resident or citizen to fill the position. Depending on your work experience or country of citizenship, the LMIA process may be relatively easier or not required at all.
Secondly, if you are employed by an international corporation with offices in Canada, you can explore the possibility of transferring to a Canadian office
Building Canadian Work Experience Gaining Canadian work experience significantly improves your chances of immigrating to British Columbia.