British Columbia is one of Canada’s most dynamic places to live, work, and build business. Located on the Pacific coast of the country, British Columbia is strategically positioned for partnerships and equipped with a highly skilled, educated, and diverse workforce. The province offers three immigration streams under its Provincial Nominee Program: Entrepreneur Immigration, Express Entry, and Skills Immigration.
This stream targets entrepreneurs with skills, experience, and interest in investing and operating a business in British Columbia that will provide economic benefit to the province. Candidates wishing to apply under the Entrepreneur Immigration Stream are required to first register with the BC PNP through its online system. Registrants will be scored according to the initial set of program requirements and BC PNP will invite the highest-ranked registrants to apply to the Entrepreneur Program within four months with supporting documents.
Stream Eligibility Criteria:
In order to register with the BC PNP, the applicant must demonstrate the following requirements:
- Personal net worth of $600,000 CAD or more under the candidate’s and/or spouse’s name;
- Prove a history of managerial experience wherein the candidate was involved in the daily operations of a business for 3+ years as an active business owner-manager, 4+ years as a senior manager, or a combination involving 1+ years of experience of the former and 2+ of the latter;
- Actively manage the daily operations of a business based in British Columbia vis-à-vis visa and have resided in BC for at least 75% of the visa duration;
- Submit a short business concept that seeks to establish or improve a business in BC, satisfies the criteria for commercial viability and economic benefits to the province, and is capable of creating at least one full-time job for a permanent resident or citizen of Canada. Note: the candidate must submit a comprehensive business plan copy if invited to formally apply for the immigration program;
- Intention to make a personal investment of $200,000 CAD or more in the proposed business after, not prior to, the date that the candidate is invited to formally apply to the immigration program. (If the candidate would like to propose a Key Staff member integral to the success of the proposed business, an eligible personal investment of $400,000 CAD will be required and different job creation requirements may apply).
The BC PNP will assign points and look favourably upon the following factors that support the candidate’s potential economic establishment in the province, however, are not mandatory:
- 2+ years of full-time post-secondary education, or 100% ownership of a business in which the candidate acted as the owner-manager for three of the past five years, managing its day-to-day activities;
- 1+ years of experience of work or full-time studies in Canada;
- Level of self-declared English language proficiency (fluency is not necessary);
- Previous visits to British Columbia.
If the applicant satisfies the stream criteria and registration process, they will be invited to formally apply to BC PNP, pay case processing fees, and undergo an interview in Vancouver. If successful, the candidate will sign a performance agreement, allowing them up to 20 months to implement their business proposal, and be granted permission to apply for a Canadian work permit that will enable the applicant and their family to move to BC and put the business plan in motion. If the candidate successfully builds their proposed business and submits a Final Report detailing the fulfillment of the signed performance agreement, they will be nominated for Permanent Residency; nominated applicants receive the right to apply for permanent residence in Canada.
The BC PNP Entrepreneur Immigration stream is active and accepts up to 200 registrations per month from prospective applicants.
For more detailed information on the program requirements and application process, please refer to British Columbia Immigration website.