Canada immigration: Jobs in demand

With the introduction of the Express Entry system this year, those who wish to migrate to Canada may feel there is only one way to go about this.

However, there are many roads that lead to Canada. In fact, there are almost as many as the provinces count.

Canada counts 10 provinces and 3 territories. Every province and territory with the exception of Nunavut runs its own immigration programme, called the Provincial Nominee Programme (PNP).

These are shaped by the specific demands of a province and have different requirements for eligibility.

Sometimes, it is easier to move through a PNP, while in other cases the federal system proves more suitable to a persons’ specific requirements.

However, what is certain is that the chances of being accepted as a new resident to the country increase when all options are considered.

How does it work?

A person can apply for a PNP alone, or in combination with an application on the federal level.

Provinces are able to make nominations under their programmes outside the Express Entry system.

This means that individuals who wish to migrate to Canada, but who are not eligible to enter the Express Entry pool, may still be able to make an application to migrate to Canada through a provincial programme, as long as they are eligible for that program.

Or, individuals can apply on both levels. When on the Express Entry list, the file may be noticed by the province or an employer. The applicant can also note to have a special interest in migrating to a province.

An invitation from a province will gain the applicant 600 points, half of the total 1,200 under the Express Entry system.

The applicant does have to comply with the requirements of one of the federal streams under the Express System.

Most provinces are now offering immigration routes where the procedures of application through the federal and provincial channel are integrated, making it easier for the applicant to apply on both levels.

This is an overview of the options available since January 2015.


Where: West Canada

Ontario is home to the capital of Canada – Ottawa – as well as Canada’s largest city, Toronto. It is the most popular destination for immigrants to the country.

The province last month announced its new programme integrated with the Express Entry system. Those interested can only apply through the Express Entry system and must meet the eligibility requirements of the federal and the provincial programmes.

The province runs two streams: the Human Capital Priorities stream and the French-Speaking Skilled Worker stream.

The Human Capital Priorities stream is a point-based system, with a minimum threshold of points to determine eligibility. Although work experience is important, there is no occupation list.

The French-Speaking Skilled Worker stream is similar to the Human Capital Priorities stream but prioritises those who speak a reasonable bit of French. There is no minimum threshold of points to apply.

More information:
Nova Scotia

Where: East Coast

Jobs in demand: Engineering, science, healthcare, finance and computing industries

Nova Scotia offers candidates the option to apply through the Express Entry system, or directly through the provincial programme.

A total of 350 applications are accepted under the programme this year.

Although a job offer is not a requirement, a point-based system applies.

Experience in an occupation that is on the list is a must.

More information

Where: Central Canada

Jobs in demand: Engineering, finance and computing industries, mechanics, plumbers, electricians

Saskatchewan developed a new Express Entry sub-category allowing for the selection of 775 applicants without a job offer at hand. Applicants must apply through the Express Entry system.

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Further, the province runs a programme for applicants with a job offer, and with professions that are in demand. Under these prorgammes the applicant does not need to go through the federal system.

More information:

Most recently, the province launched an Entrepreneur and Farm category, offering candidates to establish, acquire, or partner in a business in Saskatchewan.

Applicants must be able to demonstrate they have a net worth of CAD500,000, and invest a minimum of CAD300,000 in Regina and Saskatoon or CAD200,000 in other communities.

More information
British Columbia

Where: West Coast

Jobs in demand: Healthcare professionals.

The Canadian province of British Columbia added a new stream to its Provincial Nominee Programme (PNP) called Express Entry British Columbia (EEBC).

This stream allows the province to nominate 5,500 candidates for Canadian permanent residence. Under this programme applicants are required to apply under the Express Entry system, as well as the provincial programme, each with its own requirements.

This month a new a new business programme was launched with the introduction of the Entrepreneur Programme, where applicants will have to compete with each other based on a list of criteria.

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For the skilled worker category, the intake cap has been reached and no more applications are accepted this year.

More information
Newfoundland and Labrador

Where: East Coast

Newfoundland And Labrador runs a Skilled Worker and an International Graduate stream. For the former, it offers a stream integrated with the Express Entry system.

In order to apply for the Skilled Worker stream, the applicant must have a full-time job offer from a Newfoundland and Labrador employer, or a job or job offer that has compensation in the form of a salary and benefits package that meets provincial employment standards and prevailing wage rates.

More information
Prince Edward Island

Where: West Coast

Prince Edward Island, the smallest of provinces in Canada, offers applicants the possibility to apply through a programme integrated with the Express Entry system, or through the provincial programme directly.

It runs a labour programme and a business programme. The labour programme has three streams: a skilled worker, critical worker and international student stream, while the business programme caters to owners, partial owners and those in need of a work permit.

Criteria are considered to be lenient at the moment.

More information

Where: Central Canada

Jobs in demand: Engineering

Alberta runs its own programme with several streams.

The province offers options for both skilled and semi-skilled workers. In addition, there are options to apply with a job offer or without.

More information:

Where: Central Canada

Manitoba launched its own Expression of Interest system, which applies to its existing Skilled Worker Overseas Programme.

The Skilled Worker Overseas Programme is unique in that it invites skilled workers with a connection to Manitoba, either through having family or friends in Manitoba or having prior work experience or education in Manitoba, to immigrate as permanent residents.

Other than the connection to Manitoba, the province prioritises applicants in the specific age group of 21 to 45 years. Language requirements are more lenient than in other provinces.

Due to these factors, professional background plays less of a role than in other provinces.
New Brunswick

Where: East coast

Jobs in demand: IT specialists, business analysts, hospitality managers, manufacturing managers, industrial electricians, industrial mechanics, bookkeepers, translators and financial analysts.

New Brunswick runs two streams; a labour market stream and a business stream. The former is integrated with the Express Entry system.

The province recently announced that it would not consider applicants who do not have a connection to Brunswick, or individuals who have not recently attended an information session or met with staff from the programme.

Further, it prioritises individuals with certain occupations (see above).

Business applicants must demonstrate to have a personal net worth of CAD300,000 and be prepared to invest at least CAD125,000 in a business in New Brunswick.

Where: West Coast

Jobs in demand: Computer science, computer engineering, accounting, translation, and banking and financial operations

Two programmes characterise the immigration stream to Quebec; the Quebec Skilled Workers Programme (QSWP) and the Quebec Investor Programme (QIP).

The QSWP is the most general immigration stream and comparable to the Federal Skilled Worker Programme. However, more lenient criteria are applied in the province and it is therefore a popular option for aspirant immigrants to the country.

The most recent application cycle started on April 1, 2014, and lasted till March 31 this year. A new application intake date has not been announced so far.

This year, 6,300 applications will be accepted and applicants are subjected to an occupation list. Further, there is a point-based system.

The QIP is tailored to encourage wealthy immigrants to invest and settle in the province of Quebec. The intake period will start on August 31, 2015 and last till January 29, 2016.

There will be a maximum of 1,750 applications accepted for processing, with no more than 1,200 applications accepted from any one country.

More information
Northwest Territories

Where: Northwest Canada

Northwest Territories runs an employer striven and business driven programme.

The employer driven programme has three streams: a skilled worker, critical worker and an express entry stream.

The latter is where it integrates with the federal system.

The business stream has an entrepreneur and self-employed route.

More information:

Where: Northwest Canada

Yukon offers individuals to apply through its provincial programme directly, or through a system integrated with the Express Entry.

It runs a Skilled Worker, Critical Impact Worker and Business stream. For the first two, the applicant must be a legal resident in the country. For the business category the applicant must have a personal net worth of CAD250,000 and make a minimum investment of CAD150, 000 in the local economy.

More information

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