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For people who are weighing their immigration options, the province of British Columbia (B.C.) in Canada may be an interesting option. B.C. is well known for its natural beauty and good education system. In addition, B.C.’s immigrant population is made up of people from all parts of the world, which makes it one of the most culturally diverse province in Canada. In B.C., everyone celebrates diversity, and there is a respect of other people’s lifestyles, cultures, religions and beliefs.
B.C. is also attractive for its very strong and sustainable economy, providing jobs for people with many different qualifications, skills and experience. Over the next ten years, the demand for labour will be greater than what the B.C. workforce can supply. This means there will be many opportunities for better job prospects.
If you are interested in applying for entrepreneur immigration programs in order to relocate to British Columbia in Canada, the new The BC Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP) Entrepreneur Immigration (EI) Regional Pilot could be an interesting option for you.
In order to attract applicants to start a business and settle in regional communities with smaller populations, the government of British Columbia has made the EI Regional Pilot’s personal net worth and investment criteria lower than the existing Entrepreneur Immigration – Base Category (EI – Base Category). The table below is a comparison of EI-Base Category and EI-Regional Pilot.
|EI – Base Category||EI – Regional Pilot|
|Experience||Within last 10 years: 3+ years of experience as a business owner-manager, OR, 4+ years of experience as a senior manager, OR, a combination of 1+ year of experience as a business owner-manager and 2+ years of experience as a senior manager.||Within last 5 years: 3+ years of experience as a business owner-manager, OR, 4+ years of experience as a senior manager, OR, a combination of 1+ year of experience as a business owner-manager and 2+ years of experience as a senior manager.|
|Net worth||At least $600,000||At least $300,000|
|Education||Obtained a post-secondary credential, OR, experience as an active business owner-manager for at least 3 of the last 5 years with 100% ownership in the business.||Same as Base Category|
|Business proposal||You must submit a business proposal to establish a new business or purchase of an existing business in B.C.||You must submit a business proposal to establish a new business in B.C. and be referred by an enrolled community|
|Ownership percentage||At least one-third (33.33%)||At least 51%|
|Investment||Minimum $200,000||Minimum $100,000|
|Job creation||Must create at least one full-time equivalent job for a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada||Same as Base Category|
|Location||Anywhere in British Columbia||Participating communities|
|Exploratory visit required?||No||Yes. You must engage and visit an enrolled community for support before registering.|
|Language requirement?||No, language test may be requested if official language skills claimed||Minimum of CLB 4 equivalent in English or French. Must submit copy of language proficiency test at registration.|
|Partner with co-registrant?||Yes||No|
|Partner with a local business/person?||Yes||Yes|
|Include a key staff?||Yes||No|
|Registration scores||Total 200 points (120 points for self-declared section; 80 points for business concept). Must score minimum of 32 points in business concept section.||Total 200 points (140 points for self-declared section; 60 points for business concept). No minimum business concept score.|
|Registration timeframe||Registrations are scored within 6 weeks||Registrations are scored within 4 weeks|
|Net worth verification||Yes, you must obtain a net worth verification report if you are invited to apply.||Same as Base Category|
|Application timeframe||Application decisions are typically made within 4 months||Same as Base Category|
|Interview required for approval?||Yes||Yes|
|Minimum amount of time to submit a final report||18 months after issuance of a work permit||12 months after issuance of a work permit|
|Fees||Registration: $300; Application: $3,500; Key staff application: $1,000||Registration: $300; Application: $3,500|
In order to be eligible, the B.C. community must have a population under 75,000 and must be located 30 kilometers away from a city with more than 75,000 inhabitants. The community must prove that it can offer the newcomer entrepreneur a network of settlement and business agencies. It is the responsibility of community representatives to attend immigration and pilot-specific training prior to hosting exploratory visits and referring prospective EI Regional Pilot applicants.
The EI Regional Pilot is for entrepreneurs looking to establish a new business in a smaller, regional community in British Columbia. In order to register and apply to the EI Regional Pilot, applicants must
Before registering to the pilot, future entrepreneur applicants must:
All candidates must conduct an exploratory visit to the community in which they are hoping to establish their business. During the exploratory visit, the prospective EI Regional Pilot candidate presents their business proposal to the community’s pilot representative. The purpose of the visit is to obtain a community referral, which is required as part of the entrepreneur candidate’s registration.
If you are interested to know more about BC PNP Entrepreneur Immigration — Regional Pilot, do not hesitate to contact our Canadian immigration specialists at Simard & Associates.