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Nestled on Canada's western coast, British Columbia is a captivating province renowned for its stunning natural landscapes, diverse cultural tapestry, and vibrant urban centers. From the rugged peaks of the Rocky Mountains to the lush rainforests of the Pacific Northwest, British Columbia offers a rich tapestry of experiences for travelers and residents alike, blending outdoor adventure with cosmopolitan charm.

Capital: Victoria

Largest City: Vancouver

Population: 5,609,870 approx (Source: Statistics Canada)

Official Language: English

Industry: Forestry, Tourism, Mining, Technology, Film and Television, Agriculture

Tourist Attractions: Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, Butchart Gardens, Capilano Suspension Bridge Park, Whistler Blackcomb, and more

Education: The public school system is divided into 59 anglophone school districts and one francophone school district. The cost of K-12 education is primarily funded through public taxation and is free for residents of the province. Parents have to pay the tuition fee in Private schools

British Columbia offers attractive post-graduation opportunities for international students, including options to work temporarily or apply for permanent residency through provincial immigration programs like the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP) or the federal Express Entry system.


If you aspire to immigrate to British Columbia, you have three pathways available:



Tailored for skilled workers, healthcare professionals, international graduates, post-graduates, entry-level, and semi-skilled workers. Candidates in this stream are required to have a job offer or be currently employed, with the exception of international post-graduates.

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Designed exclusively for skilled workers, healthcare professionals, international graduates, and post-graduates.

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Provides opportunities for entrepreneurs seeking to immigrate to British Columbia.


The BC PNP Skills Immigration program encompasses distinct categories:


Skilled Worker Category: Designed for individuals who have secured an eligible job offer in a skilled occupation, requiring many years of relevant experience.

Healthcare Professional Category: This category caters to individuals with experience and qualifying job offers in healthcare fields such as physicians, nurses, psychiatric nurses, or allied health professionals, among others. Job offers must align with one of 11 designated health occupations.

International Graduate Category: Intended for individuals who have completed their studies at an eligible Canadian university or college within the past three years. To qualify, applicants must secure a job offer from a British Columbia employer.

International Post-Graduate Category: Tailored for graduates holding Masters or Doctoral degrees from recognized educational institutions in British Columbia, specializing in natural, applied, or health sciences programs. Unlike other categories, no job offer is required to apply under this sub-category.

Entry Level and Semi-Skilled Worker Category: Available to workers in certain entry-level or semi-skilled positions, including those in tourism/hospitality, food processing, long-haul trucking, or residing and working in the Northeast Development Region of British Columbia.

  • Full-time job offer for a TEER 4 or 5 position (except for the International Post-Graduate Category).

  • Wage offer compliant with provincial wage rates (except for the International Post-Graduate Category).

  • Ability to demonstrate financial support for yourself and your family (except for the International Post-Graduate Category).

  • Meet minimum language proficiency requirements

  • Fulfill any additional criteria specific to your chosen category.

  • Employers must meet eligibility criteria (except for the International Post-Graduate Category).

Processing Time: Typically 2-3 months.

How to apply:

Register online with the Skills Immigration Registration System (SIRS).  B.C. will review your job, education, location in B.C., language ability and wage against the provincial labour market needs.


Express Entry BC allows eligible applicants to receive priority processing of both their BC PNP application and if nominated, their permanent residence application.


Skills Immigration categories that may qualify to be processed through Express Entry British Columbia:

  • Skilled Worker Category

  • Health Care Professional Category

  • International Graduate Category

  • International Post-Graduate Category


  • Must have a valid profile with the federal Express Entry system/

  • Must have a Job Seeker Validation Code from the Express Entry system.

  • Must have accepted a full-time job offer (except for the International Post-Graduate Category).

  • Must have a wage offer in line with B.C. wage rates (except for the International Post-Graduate Category).

  • Must be able to support yourself and your family (except for the International Post-Graduate Category).

  • Must meet minimum language requirements (except for the International Post-Graduate Category).

  • Must meet additional requirements specific to your category.

  • Employers must also be eligible (except for the International Post-Graduate Category).

Processing Time: Typically 2-3 months.

How to apply:

Create an Express Entry profile with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).


Entrepreneur Immigration is a “temporary to permanent” immigration pathway. That means that if you are approved, you will initially come to B.C. as a temporary resident, and then apply to stay permanently once you have successfully started a business.

There are three streams to immigrate to British Columbia as an entrepreneur:


  • Personal net worth of at least CAD$600,000

  • Business and/or management experience; if no business experience, must have the equivalent of a 2-year post-secondary diploma

  • Basic English or French language skill equal to Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level 4 or higher

  • Have been lawfully admitted in the country where you currently live

  • Have, or be eligible for, legal immigration status in Canada



  • Establish an eligible new business or buy and improve an existing business

  • Make an eligible personal investment of at least CAD$200,000 in the business

  • Create at least one new full-time job for a Canadian citizen or permanent resident

This category is for senior managers or business owners who intend to invest funds into a proposed business in British Columbia.

How to apply:


The initial step involves crafting a compelling business proposal tailored to your individual expertise and aligned with the demands of the British Columbia economy. Conduct thorough research to identify the type of business to propose and the suitable location within B.C. Government resources, like the                                                                    , can assist you in this process.

Refer to                                                                        to explore the key industries and sectors as well as different regions and communities in B.C.


Regional Pilot program is designed for foreign nationals aiming to establish and operate a business in smaller communities throughout British Columbia. The business must be situated in a smaller community rather than a larger city. This initiative is tailored to mitigate demographic issues in these communities, such as the migration of young individuals to more densely populated urban areas in British Columbia. 

Entrepreneurs approved under the Entrepreneur Immigration (EI) — Regional Pilot will initially acquire a temporary work permit to set up and manage their business in British Columbia for a minimum of 12 months, as outlined in their established Performance Agreement. 

If the business continues to fulfill the terms of this agreement to the satisfaction of the BC PNP, the entrepreneur will be nominated provincially and can proceed to apply to the Government of Canada for permanent residency.


Community Engagement: Participating communities play an active role in selecting potential candidates. Designated representatives from the community engage with prospective entrepreneurs, assess their business proposals, and refer them to the BC PNP if selected. Additionally, communities and local partners offer settlement support services to assist entrepreneurs upon their arrival.

Referral System: Participating communities have the authority to refer immigrant entrepreneurs to the BC PNP. To qualify for a referral, the entrepreneur must conduct a preliminary visit to the community, and their proposed business must align with the community's economic development priorities.

Community Assistance: Participating communities can access a dedicated Community Concierge provided through the pilot to address their immigration-related needs.

Invitations and Prioritization: Immigrant entrepreneurs referred by the community are eligible to join a separate candidate pool for the EI Regional Pilot. The BC PNP gives priority to qualified applications, issuing invitations on a monthly basis.

  • Possess a minimum personal net worth of $300,000.

  • Hold active business ownership and senior management experience within the last 5 years, including:

  • A combination of 1 or more years as an active business owner/manager and 2 or more years as a senior manager.

  • Demonstrate language proficiency equivalent to a Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level 4.

  • Submit a business plan outlining the establishment of a new eligible business in a designated B.C. community.

  • Hold either a post-secondary credential or demonstrate at least 3 years of business ownership/management experience with 100% ownership for a minimum of 3 out of 5 years.

  • Show that they will maintain at least 51% ownership of the proposed business.

  • Be capable of investing a minimum of $100,000 in eligible business investments in the proposed business (only upon invitation to apply). Investments made prior to the date of invitation will not be considered by the BC PNP.

  • 3 or more years as an active business owner-manager

  • 4 or more years as a senior manager; or

    by the BC PNP.



Through this category, foreign-controlled companies can set up an operation in British Columbia. These companies should have the potential to generate significant employment and contribute to the economy of the province. 

This stream enables foreign corporations to permanently transfer and nominate to support the PR of up to 5 key staff members, who will actively manage the B.C. operations.


  • Be current senior employees of the foreign corporation who have the qualifications and experience that are  essential to establish and operate the business in B.C.

  • Is being appointed to an executive or senior managerial position, or has specialized knowledge essential to the proposed B.C. operation

  • Will be employed in a permanent full-time capacity at the B.C. operation

  • Is offered a wage commensurate with his/her expertise and consistent with industry and corporate compensation structures

  • Must make a minimum equity investment of at least $500,000 directed toward the corporation’s operations in B.C.

  • Must establish new or purchase and expand an eligible business in B.C.

  • Create at least three new full-time equivalent jobs for Canadian citizens or permanent residents for each foreign key staff member proposed (to a maximum of five key staff)


How to apply:


Senior officials should make a visit to B.C. to explore opportunities and understand the business environment.

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