BCPNP Introduces a New skilled Worker Sub Category ahead of January 2016 re-launch

Vancouver as seen from Grouse Mountain

Vancouver as seen from Grouse Mountain

While the skilled worker program under British Columbia  Provincial Nominee Program (BCPNP) is closed until early January 2016, a new sub category stream has been introduced to qualified applicants.

On September 1st, 2015, the Skilled Immigration stream stopped accepting applications. However, as of November 10, 2015, the Skilled Immigration category has seen an addition of 50 applications to attract some in demand jobs. The 50 additional spots are aimed at bringing in more high-wage ($100,000+) workers, think for example: engineers, software developers, and managers. For those out there with a pending application do not worry, the extra applications will not delay the processing time of current applications.

There is no change to the Entrepreneur Immigration stream, it will remain open for new applications, up to a maximum of 200 new applications per month.

What to expect in 2016:

  • The Province receives a new allocation of BC PNP nominations from the Federal government in January 2016.  
  • At that time, the BC PNP will have a new points-based skills intake system requiring an invitation to apply.  
  • Points will be given to applicants whose skills and experience line up with B.C.’s economic development priorities

International Experience Canada (IEC) Sees Major Changes

Toronto, Canada
Photo by Daniel Novykov on Unsplash

The International Experience Canada (IEC) is a program run by Immigration and Citizenship Canada (CIC) aimed at young adults wishing to work while visiting Canada. It is the simplest visa to get for a working holiday and this makes it very popular. IEC is geared towards the 19 to 35 age group coming from certain countries that have an agreement with Canada. Potential candidates must be aware of the major change the CIC recently announced.

The International Experience Canada (IEC) is seeing a major change as of November 21, 2015. No longer will the program process applications chronologically, instead, a candidate will create a profile and enter into a pool with other applicants. There will be one pool of candidates per country with two categories: one for international Co-op and young professionals and one for those desiring to work while on holiday. To give a brief overview of the process for applying:

  1. Potential candidates must complete a survey, Come to Canada, to determine eligibility. It is a brief survey and shouldnt take more than 15 minutes to complete.
  2. If the candidate is found to be eligible, they will then need to create a MyCIC account and create an IEC profile. Information provided in the profile will determine the candidate’s eligibility for the categories. Applicants may submit to one or more of the pools.
  3. A candidate that is selected will receive an Invitation to Apply and will be eligible to apply for a work permit. Note: an invitation does not mean a guaranteed work permit.

It is in the candidate’s best interest that while you are waiting for the invitation you prepare yourself by gathering all the supporting documents you may need. Once you accept the invitation you will only have 20 days to submit supporting documents. If, however, an applicant does not receive an Invitation to Apply, they can keep their profile active in the pool for up to 12 months.


Canada’s Process to Resettle 25,000 Syrian Refugees

Akre Camp for Syrian refugees from Rojava in Akre (Aqre) town, Dohuk Governorate, Kurdistan Region of Iraq

Working together with the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and other nations, Canada is looking for registered individuals who wish to immigrate to Canada. An emphasis is placed on candidates deemed vulnerable, with highest priority going to: complete families, women at risk, and members of the LGBTI community. Refugees who are being privately sponsored are already identified with their information and applications in the hands of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Since November 17, 2015, the UNHCR has been contacting selected individuals who may be interested in resettling in Canada. If interested, they will be directed to go to the nearest UNHCR office where their identity will be verified. Their identity will be verified by their photo registration card and by an iris scan to ensure against fraud. After the individual’s identity has been verified they’ll proceed with an information session, followed by scheduling an interview with a Canadian visa officer.

From there refugees will be sent to one of two processing centers in Amman or Beirut for additional screening. Immigration offices in Turkey will also see an increase in their visa processing capabilities. Over 500 government officials have been sent to assist in the processing. Since the immigration processing will be completed entirely overseas, it requires very in-depth screening such as:

  • Security screening by comparing the individual’s biographical and biometric information with immigration, law enforcement, and security databases.
  • Full medical exam including screening for communicable diseases such as tuberculosis.
  • Criminal history screening in collaboration with Canada Border Service Agency (CBSA).

After successfully completing the screening process, selected refugees will be granted permanent resident visas. They will have to confirm their identity prior to leaving for Canada by the CBSA and again by Border Services Officers once they enter.


Quebec Skilled Worker second intake will start on January 18, 2016

View of downtown Montreal from Mont Royal Park

View of downtown Montreal from Mont Royal Park

The Quebec Skilled Worker Program has received the maximum number of applications for the first intake period.

The Skilled Worker Program is a Canadian immigration program aimed toward highly-skilled and trained workers. There is an extra step for those planning on applying to this program who intend to live and work in Québec. The government of Québec has a special agreement with Canada’s federal immigration service, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). An applicant must be selected by Quebec’s immigration authority, Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Diversité et de l’Inclusion (MIDI) and receive a Quebec Certificat de Sélection (CSQ) to file an application with the CIC for permanent residency.

The maximum number of applications for the Québec Skilled Worker Program has been met as of November 10, 2015. The first application intake period, which started on November 4th, was set to receive a maximum of 3,500 applications. The second intake period will start on January 18, 2016 and run through March 31, 2016. This second intake period will be open for a maximum of 2,800 applications, which must be submitted online.

Though, the maximum limit has been met with applications you may still apply. Either by mail up until December 31, 2015, or online as of January 5, 2016 if one of the following applies to you:

  • You have an Ministére approved job offer or;
  • You are currently a temporary resident and qualify for the Certificat de sélection du Québec.