British Columbia (BC) has seen a great increase in skilled workers arriving in the province through PNP (Provincial Nominee Program) in 2019. The Skilled Immigration (SI) stream of BC PNP accounts to 99% of all candidates who got nomination from the province for permanent residence (PR). The remaining 1% is claimed by the Entrepreneur Immigration stream.
In 2019 British Columbia PNP witnessed the largest number of registrants. It was also the biggest year for the Tech Pilot besides registering the most provincial nominations sent in a single year.
The total provincial nominations sent for PR in 2019 came to 6,551 which is larger than the cap imposed by the federal government on the province under Canada immigration rules.
The Skills Immigration stream paves the path for PR for foreign workers who are eligible and usually have a job offered in BC. Under the Skilled Immigration stream, there are 5 categories of which 4 are aligned with the Express Entry system. These 5 categories are:
- Skilled worker – Here, those with many years of experience in a skilled job and offered a job are involved.
- Healthcare professional – This category includes psychiatric nurses, nurses, physicians, and allied health professionals with a job offer in any of the 11 eligible occupations.
- International graduate – This category is for workers who graduated from an eligible university or college in Canada in the last 3 years.
- International post-graduate – This category has candidates who are Masters or Ph.D. graduates from eligible BC post-secondary institutions. This could be in the applied, natural, or health sciences. Such candidates need not have a job offer to apply for this category.
- Entry-level & Semi-Skilled worker – This category is for entry-level or semi-skilled workers. They may have jobs in long-haul trucking, food processing, hospitality or tourism areas. These workers may otherwise be in entry-level or semi-skilled positions living and working in the Northeast Development region of BC. This category does not align to the federal government’s Express Entry system.
BC has reported that the average salaries for Skilled Immigrants stream nominees have substantially increased from 2018 to 2019. The increases for different categories were as follows:
- Express Entry BC International Graduate – 13.1%
- Skilled Worker – 13.4%
- International Graduate – 19.5%
The average salaries given to immigrant nominees for different categories are:
- Entry Level and Semi-Skilled – $44,527
- International Graduate – $47,407
- EEBC – International Graduate – $47,736
- Skilled Worker – $73,960
- EEBC – Skilled Worker – $74,359
With regard to the Tech Pilot invites, BC PNP invites Skilled Immigrant stream candidates to join in any of the 29 occupations in technology, business support services, and engineering. In 2019, the total number of Tech Pilot invitations sent was 1,509, which exceeds the figure in 2018 by 33%.
Tech Pilot nominations accounted for 23% of total nominations sent. This is an increase from 17.4% in 2018.
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