Canada one of the fastest growing economies that invites the largest number of immigrants per capita in a given year and allows at least 200,000 immigrants to start a new life in Canada as Permanent Residents.
Once a prospective immigrant’s Permanent Residency status is approved, the individual receives a Permanent Resident Card and enjoys almost all of the same privileges as citizens of Canada. As a permanent resident in Canada, one can have a host of benefits like social security, medical coverage, affordable education options, and much more.
Immigrants can apply under one of five categories for Canadian permanent residence:
- Skilled Workers
- Provincial Nomination Program (PNP)
- Business/Investor Immigration
- Canadian Experience Class (CEC) Immigration
- Family Sponsorship
Applications for Permanent Residency in Canada under the skilled worker class are evaluated for eligibility according to a "points system". The point system considers six key factors for the applicant and accordingly awards a score to the applicant. The scores for each factor are then assessed individually and the applicant’s overall score will determine whether they successfully qualify to be a permanent resident under the Skilled Worker designation. The minimum score required by the applicant is 67 out of a total of 100 points. The 6 selection factors are as follows:
- Education (25 points)
- Arranged employment (10 points)
- Work experience (15 points)
- Age (12 points)
- Proficiency in English and/or French (28 points)
- Adaptability (10 points)
Apart from qualifying within the "points system", the applicants must also must meet two other criteria:
- The applicants have at least 1,560 hours of continuous paid work experience in the same job within the past 10 years.
- The work experience must encompass either a management job, professional occupation or technical job/skilled trade as set out in the National Occupational Classification (NOC).
- The applicant must meet language requirements in either French or English.
- The applicant must satisfy the education requirements comparable to a Canadian high-school diploma.
These are not the only criteria used to decide the applicant’s suitability. There are further important circumstances, such as the Canadian labour market, the individual’s criminal history (if any), and health conditions. These are all taken into account to determine the outcome of the Permanent Residency application.
Provincial Nomination Program (PNP)
Almost every province in Canada has implemented its own provincial immigration program (known as Provincial Nominee Programs) in order to serve the province’s particular needs. As a result, the provinces play an important role in the process of nominating the economic immigrants who wish to settle in their province. The individual is required to contact the representative immigration office within the target province and apply for nomination to that province. Once the nomination has been carried out, the individual has to apply to the Citizenship and Immigration Department for permanent residency.
There are three main classes of business immigration, under which permanent residency in Canada can be applied for: investors, entrepreneurs and self-employed personnel.
The Investor Venture Capital Program is currently closed to new applicants.
Entrepreneurs may be eligible to gain Canadian citizenship under the Start-up Visa program. Applicants under this program must be supported by one of several designated organizations in Canada. Supporting organizations are classified as either Venture Capitalists, Angel Investors or Business Incubators. Under this program there are certain ownership requirements that must be met by the applicant and also the designated sponsoring organization. Applicants must also meet English or French language requirements and must bring sufficient funds to support yourself and any dependents while in Canada.
Self-employed persons must have the business experience and ability to establish a small business that is able to generate at least an employment opportunity for themselves and be expected to contribute substantially to cultural activities in Canada. Though there is no minimum net worth required for qualifying as a self-employed immigrant, the applicant should have sufficient funds to intend to pursue the business.