Sunset on a beach in Prince Edward Island, Canada

The Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program (AIPP) — a new three-year pilot program for immigration to Atlantic Canada — was launched on March 6, 2017.

Up to 2,000 new applications to this employer-driven program will be processed in 2017, and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) aims to process 80 percent of complete applications in six months or less.

The AIPP is a new initiative between the federal government and the Atlantic provinces, namely Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island (PEI), and Newfoundland and Labrador. Employers will be heavily involved in the process, with all applicants needing a job offer in order to meet the eligibility requirements.

The AIPP has two sub-programs for skilled workers:

and one sub-program for international student graduates:

While some of the requirements are universal across the three sub-programs, other requirements are specific to each sub-program. The work experience, education, and job offer required will depend on whether the individual is applying as a worker or as an international student graduate. The other requirements are the same for both.

See the table below for a review of the requirements.

  Atlantic Intermediate-Skilled Program (AISP) Atlantic High-Skilled Program (AHSP) Atlantic International Graduate Program (AIGP)
Job offer from a designated employer
  • Full time
  • Indeterminate
  • NOC 0, A, B or C
  • Full time
  • One-year contract
  • NOC 0, A or B
  • Full time
  • One-year contract
  • NOC 0, A, B or C
Skilled work experience
  • One year in occupation related to job offer
N/A
Education
  • Completion of at least high school
  • Educational Credential Assessment or Canadian credential is required
  • Two-year post-secondary diploma from a publicly funded learning institution in the Atlantic region
Language Level 4 of the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) in English or the Niveau de compétence linguistique Canadien in French
Provincial endorsement Letter of endorsement

Potential applicants may note that the language threshold for this program is lower than for many other Canadian economic immigration programs, including the programs managed under the Express Entry system.

Potential applicants may also note the following aspects of the AIPP:

  • The program is not aligned with the Express Entry system.
  • There is no points system.
  • The program is first-come, first-served.

Employer designation

There is no Labour Market Impact Assessment process under the AIPP.

However, employers that would like to hire skilled immigrants under the pilot program must apply to their province in order to receive designation. Employers with locations in multiple provinces will require separate a designation for each province. Employers must meet certain requirements, including a commitment to support the newcomer and his or her family as they integrate into their new life in Atlantic Canada.

Learn more about AIPP employer designation.

To find out if you are eligible to immigrate to Canada permanently, fill out a free online assessment form.