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Eight New Communities Added To B.C Entrepreneur Immigration Regional Pilot

Eight new communities have been included to the list of those eligible for the British Columbia Entrepreneur Immigration (EI) Regional Pilot program.

The Entrepreneur Immigration Regional Pilot is for foreign entrepreneurs who wish to start a new business in a smaller, regional community in B.C.

Communities with less than 75,000 people located more than thirty (30) km away from a metropolitan centre have been participating since the program began in March.

The eight new communities added brought the number of communities taking part in the regional pilot program to Sixty-Six (66).

The eight new communities are:

  • Akisqnuk First Nation
  • Canal Flats
  • Invermere
  • Parksville
  • Peachland
  • Radium Hot Springs
  • Shuswap Indian Band
  • Regional District of East Kootnay (Area F, Area G)

Participating communities have to prove that they can provide eligible business owners a network of settlement and agencies. Community representatives have to also attend immigration and pilot-specific training in order to host exploratory visits for prospective candidates.

Who can apply for Entrepreneur Immigration?

Prospective business owners must complete an exploratory visit to the community where they want to establish their business. They must then present their business plan to a community representative and obtain a referral in order to apply under the pilot.

When applying, candidates must submit information about their work and/or business experience, language ability, education, net worth, and information on the proposed business, among other things.

The personal net worth requirements for the pilot have been cut down compared to the EI class. This is to show the lower cost of starting a business and settling in B.C.’s rural regions.

In order to qualify candidates must:

  • have at least $100,000 in eligible business investments;
  • have at least personal net worth of $300,000;
  • have a minimum three (3+) years of experience as an active entrepreneur-manager or four (4+) years as a senior manager within the past five years;
  • take on a minimum of fifty-one (51) per cent ownership;
  • Establish at least one new job for a Canadian permanent resident or citizen of Canada;
  • have met the minimum language requirements in English or French or equivalent to Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 4;
  • meet other eligibility criteria.

Candidates will get a score upon registration. Those with the highest scores will receive an invitation to submit a full application to the BC PNP via monthly invitation rounds.

Applications are normally assessed within four months, and applicants may be invited to attend a personal interview in Vancouver to discuss in-depth details of their application.

Once approved, candidates must sign a performance agreement with the British Columbia PNP, which states all the requirements needed in order to obtain a nomination for Canadian permanent residence.

Successful candidates receive a work permit support letter from the BC PNP. Later, they can file an application to the Government of Canada for a two-year temporary working permit.

Once the BC PNP states that the terms and conditions of the performance agreement have been fulfilled, they will select the entrepreneur for Canadian permanent residence.

B.C. Entrepreneur Immigrations – Regional Pilot

Important Features

1) Community Involvement

Participatory communities are actively involved in drawing foreign entrepreneur and helping them get settled after arrival.

2) BC PNP Referrals

Participation communities can refer foreign entrepreneurs to the BC PNP. The applicants must have visited the community and have a business plan linked with their economic priorities.

3) Community Concierge

Participation communities should have access to the services of a dedicated BC PNP Community Concierge.

4) Invitations and Prioritization

Referred applicants register is a separate BC PNP pool. Monthly invitations are forwarded to the best scoring applicants. Those invited got priority processing.