An aerial view of Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada

The province of British Columbia continues to be a leader on the immigration front, with 647 candidates having been issued an Invitation to Apply (ITA) to the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP) in a draw that took place on September 27, 2016. A wide range of workers, international graduates, and entrepreneurs are now in a position to submit an application for a provincial nomination certificate to the BC PNP, after which they may apply to the federal government for permanent resident status.

The vast majority of ITAs were issued to candidates in categories under the BC PNP Skills Immigration Registration System (SIRS), with the remaining ITAs issued to candidates in the Entrepreneur Immigration stream pool. The SIRS is a dynamic intake management system that allows the province to prioritize candidates for provincial nomination. As it is a points-based system, candidates receive a score based on the information they provide upon registration. This score will determine whether a candidate receives an ITA when a draw is performed.

Certain BC PNP categories that operate under the SIRS are aligned with the federal Express Entry immigration selection system, while applications made to certain other categories are processed entirely outside the Express Entry system. These latter categories are collectively known as 'base' categories, as opposed to 'enhanced' categories that are aligned with Express Entry.

BC PNP Invitations to Apply: September 27 Draw

The September 27 draw is noteworthy in the fact that the minimum point requirement decreased for each SIRS category, in some cases substantially. Moreover, the number of ITAs issued increased from 477 (in the September 15 draw) to 647 this time around. The only category that saw an increase in the minimum point requirement was the BC Entrepreneur Immigration Stream.

On September 27, the BC PNP issued ITAs across the following categories. Further details on these categories are available below the table.

Stream/Category Minimum Score Points difference from previous draw Number of Invitations Aligned with Express Entry?
Express Entry BC – Skilled Worker 90 -5 104 Yes
Express Entry BC – International Graduate 85 -5 124 Yes
Skills Immigration – Skilled Worker 90 -5 73 No
Skills Immigration – International Graduate 90 -10 155 No
Skills Immigration – Entry Level and Semi-Skilled 60 -20 181 No
BC Entrepreneur Immigration Stream* 133 +5 10 No

(*The September 15 draw did not issue ITAs under the BC Entrepreneur Immigration Stream. Therefore, the points difference noted for this category is from the August 24 draw, which was the last time ITAs were issued for this category.)

Express Entry BC – Skilled Worker

The Express Entry BC – Skilled Worker category is for international skilled workers who have post-secondary education or training and employment experience in a professional, management, technical, trade or other skilled occupation. Candidates must be eligible to enter the federal Express Entry pool. A successful application under this category results in the candidate receiving 600 points under the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) and a subsequent ITA at the federal level.

To learn more about the Express Entry BC – Skilled Worker category, click here.

Express Entry BC – International Graduate

International graduates who have graduated from a Canadian university or college within the past two years may be eligible to apply under the Express Entry BC – International Graduate category. Interestingly, this category is open to eligible graduates who graduated from a university or college in any location in Canada; it is not restricted to graduates from BC universities and colleges. This category is also aligned with the federal Express Entry system.

To learn more about the Express Entry BC – International Graduate category, click here.

Skills Immigration – Skilled Worker

This base category is open to workers with post-secondary education or training and employment experience in a skilled occupation. A job offer is required.

To learn more about the Skills Immigration – Skilled Worker category, click here.

Skills Immigration – International Graduate

This category is for international students who have graduated from a Canadian university or college within two years of applying to the BC PNP. While applicants do not necessarily need prior work experience, applicants are required to obtain a job offer from a B.C. employer.

To learn more about the Skills Immigration – International Graduate category, click here.

Skills Immigration – Entry Level and Semi-Skilled

This category is open to candidates who may not be eligible for other Canadian immigration programs, as it allows certain non-skilled workers to apply for permanent residence. Candidates must work in an eligible occupation within the tourism/hospitality, long-haul trucking, or food processing industries, or in a NOC skill level C or D occupation in the Northeast Development Region of the province.

To learn more about the Skills Immigration – Entry Level and Semi-Skilled category, click here.

Entrepreneur Immigration

This stream provides a pathway to Canadian permanent residence for experienced businesspeople who can establish themselves in B.C. and invest in and operate a commercially viable business that can provide significant benefits to the provincial economy. Successful applicants will obtain a work permit and, if the business operation in British Columbia fulfills the requirements of the stream on an ongoing basis, they will be able to apply for permanent residence in Canada through the BC PNP. 

To learn more about the Entrepreneur Immigration stream, click here.

Guaranteed Invitations

Candidates who achieve or exceed the following registration scores will receive an Invitation to Apply in the next draw for his or her chosen category.

Category Minimum score
Skills Immigration - Skilled Worker 135
Skills Immigration - International Graduate 105
Skills Immigration - Entry Level and Semi-Skilled 95
Express Entry BC - Skilled Worker 135
Express Entry BC - International Graduate 105

If you are interested in immigrating to Canada through the BC PNP, use the exclusive CanadaVisa SIRS Calculator to calculate how many points you may be awarded under the system. 

To learn more about your Canadian immigration options through the BC PNP, as well as other programs, please fill out a free online assessment today.