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Immigraton Corner | I want to migrate to British Columbia

Published:Tuesday | April 30, 2019 | 12:06 AM
Deidre S. Powell
Deidre S. Powell

Dear Miss Powell,

I read your article last week about the provincial programmes and wondered if you would enlighten me about the province of British Columbia (BC) and other provinces. I have a few friends living in BC and they say that it is a good province to live in, so I’d like to go there. My research online reveals that there is a high-tech programme for persons with a degree in computer sciences. I am interested in that programme and want to know how the system works and how long it will take for the application to be processed


Dear PO,

Individuals with the required training, skills and work experience can apply to the various provinces in Canada to be nominated to receive permanent residence of Canada. The application is done in stages and requires time, patience and must be done accurately as mistakes can be costly and fatal to your application.

Highly trained individuals can use the Provincial Nominee Programme (PNP) as a pathway to be able to live, work, study and raise a family in Canada.

Individuals with computer skills, as well as early childhood educators, administrative assistants, social and community workers and accounting technicians should consider examining PNP in provinces such as British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Alberta, Manitoba, New Brunswick Nova Scotia and Ontario. However, since your focus is on the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Programme (BC PNP), I will highlight the key features.

The BC PNP Tech Pilot

The BC Tech Pilot was implemented in 2017 based on employers demands for certain qualified individuals in the province. This pilot programme is a temporary one and it expected that the programme will end in June 2019. Therefore, if you are interested, I recommend that you act immediately before the programme closes.

Under this programme, in-demand foreign workers and international students can have their applications fast-tracked, so that they can receive permanent residence of Canada. There are various categories under the BC PNP and eligibility depends on the job, work experience and education among other factors. that the province of British Columbia has identified for 2019 and I have highlighted them on my Facebook page.

Twenty-nine In-demand occupations in BC

Based on detailed research, the province has issued a list of 29 in-demand occupations. The list of in-demand occupations includes telecommunications managers, computer and information system managers, computer technicians, user support technicians, civil engineers, chemical engineers, mechanical engineers, database analyst and consultants, web designers and developers, broadcast technicians, audio and video recording technician, graphic designers and illustrators, industrial instrument technicians, biological technologist and technicians, managers of publishing, motion pictures, broadcasting and the performing arts, editors, authors and writers.

Job Offer

All BC PNP categories, except the International Post Graduate categories, require a job offer from a qualified BC employer. In fact, individuals who are interested in applying under a Skills Immigration category that falls under an eligible tech occupation, must have a job offer of at least one year in length from an eligible employer. The employer does not need a Labour Market Impact Assessment report, if the occupation is on the list on in-demand jobs. Also, for some categories, prior work experience is not required.

Once you have determined the best category for you, you can apply on the province’s website. You may submit an application/expression of interest and this application is free. However, you should note that in order to apply you will need the support of a BC employer, as there are strict requirements for both the employer and the applicant. The application consists of a registration or expression of interest, application and the nomination stages. Individuals must meet all the programme requirements for each stage of the process in order to advance to the next.

If you satisfy the requirements, you will receive an invitation to apply for a nomination. At this point you will need to submit documents to substantiate the information provided. This application must be completed within 30 calendar days and you will be required to pay a fee of CAD$700 to the province.

Based on current trends, applicants could receive approval of their nomination application within two to three months after submission, although this application could be fast tracked, depending on the employer's urgent needs.

Once you have been granted a provincial nomination, your next step will be to apply to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada to grant you permanent residence of Canada via the express entry system. You will automatically be given 600 points and would most likely be invited to apply for permanent residence in the next draw. Once you have completed this stage, an officer will then assess your application based on the immigration rules. If you pass all the medical and criminal checks, supply all the required documents, you should be granted a permanent resident status within six months after you have applied.

Deidre S. Powell is a lawyer, mediator, and notary public who is a member of the Jamaican and Ontario, Canada bars, with main office located in Ottawa, Ontario. Her areas of practice are in immigration, real estate, commercial, family and administration of estates. Email: subjectline: immigration, Call 613.695.8777 Find here on