Updated on June 3, 2023.
The British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP), an economic immigration initiative, is facilitated by the Immigration Programs Branch of the Government of British Columbia. The BC PNP is designed to nominate foreign workers, international students, and entrepreneurs who can contribute to the economic development of B.C, fulfill labor market needs, and support the government’s strategic priorities. Nomination under this program opens up the pathway for candidates and their families to apply for permanent residency in Canada through the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
The BC PNP plays a crucial role in B.C.’s labor market and economic development by allowing the province to select and nominate individuals who possess the necessary skills and expertise. This includes not only foreign workers and international students but also entrepreneurs and refugees, thereby contributing to B.C.’s diversity and economic prosperity.
Strategic Focus and Initiatives
Under the Canada-British Columbia Immigration Agreement (CBCIA), the BC PNP is administered jointly by the Province and Canada. The initiative’s objective is to meet B.C’s unique labor requirements and facilitate economic development by nominating suitable candidates.
BC PNP’s strategic focus is determined each year, aligning with the Stronger BC Economic Plan. The strategic priorities and initiatives are continuously reviewed and optimized to ensure they meet recovery objectives, support resilient communities, maintain program integrity, and assist qualifying candidates.
Special emphasis to B.C.’s Care Economy
Under BC PNP, there’s an increased focus on the “care economy”. This is to address the critical shortage of health care professionals and early childhood educators (ECEs) in the province. Eligible professionals with a valid job offer in B.C and on the predetermined list of in-demand health occupations will have priority access.
The BC PNP Tech is another crucial initiative supporting the recruitment and retention of international tech talent when local skilled workers are not available. Since its inception in May 2017, it has helped over 6,000 tech professionals to secure nominations for permanent residence, thereby contributing to the development of the tech sector in B.C.
Furthermore, the BC PNP is part of the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP) launched in 2018. The EMPP focuses on providing alternative pathways to skilled refugees, enabling them to contribute their expertise to B.C.’s labor market.
The BC PNP also aims to attract investment-ready entrepreneurs with proven business acumen, who intend to establish and manage their business in B.C. This stream supports economic growth and promotes diversity in both urban and rural communities across the province.
Priority occupations under BC PNP include tech occupations, care economy roles in healthcare and childcare, and other select professions. These roles are prioritized for the economic growth and stability of the province.
Processing times for the BC PNP applications can vary depending on the program capacity. On average, a Skills Immigration application takes around three months to process. Post-nomination requests also take around the same time.