A Guide to BC PNP - EI Strategic Projects

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Overview

The Strategic Projects Category is for foreign corporations who wish to expand their operations by setting up a branch office or a facility in British Columbia. This program comes under the BC PNP Entrepreneur Immigration stream.

This program will allow foreign corporations to relocate staff with crucial knowledge and expertise to the province of British Columbia and support their Canadian immigration. The company may apply for a provincial nomination for up to five people among their current senior employees who will take an active part in managing the local operation.

Eligibility Requirements

This program includes eligibility requirements for the corporation as well as its employees.

Corporate Eligibility Requirements

The corporate eligibility requirements are as follows:

  • The company must be in excellent financial standing, demonstrate good business practices, and have successful operations in countries other than Canada. These operations must also be relevant to the company’s future branch or facility in British Columbia.
  • The company must find investment opportunities that will benefit the business and provide it with a solid foundation to start and operate in British Columbia.
  • The company must prove that the employees it plans to send to British Columbia are senior staff members who possess the qualifications to establish and run the business well in the province.
  • The company must make an equity investment of $500,000 CAD or more to establish, buy, or expand its operations in British Columbia.
  • The new company branch or facility must create three or more jobs for Canadian citizens or Canadian permanent residents for each foreign staff member that comes to the country under the program.
  • There are no minimum company size or revenue requirements to apply for the Strategic Projects program.
  • However, most companies who succeed under this program generally have a minimum of 150 staff members and a minimum annual revenue of $20 million CAD.

Please note: Certain types of businesses are not qualified to participate in this program. They include bed and breakfasts, home-based businesses, money-changing, and cash machine businesses, automated car washes, real estate development, and many others. See the BC PNP program website for the complete list.

Staff Eligibility Requirements

The foreign staff members who will come to Canada to establish and run the business must be eligible for immigration under existing Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) rules. This means staff members must not fall into any of the following categories:

  • Were prohibited from coming to Canada.
  • Were not lawfully admitted to the country they are currently residing in.
  • Are currently in Canada but are no longer legally allowed to remain there.
  • Are currently working in Canada illegally without authorization.
  • Possess an unresolved Canadian refugee claim.
  • Have been issued a removal order inside or outside Canada.

Step-by-Step Process

Prospective corporations who wish to apply for the Strategic Projects category must follow the steps outlined below.

Stage 1

  • Make an Exploratory Visit
  • Discuss the Proposal
  • Register for the Strategic Projects program
  • Receive an invitation to apply
  • Complete and Submit the Application

Stage 2

  • Sign Performance Agreements
  • Receive Temporary Work Permits
  • Build a business and receive a provincial nomination
  • Applying For Permanent Residence

Stage One

1. Make an Exploratory Visit

The company’s senior executives are encouraged to visit British Columbia and learn about the various business opportunities in the province. This visit is not required. However, it may help the company’s senior executives understand the business environment they will be expanding into.

2. Discuss the Proposal and Get it Approved

The company is required to contact the BC PNP when they wish to apply for the Strategic Projects category. The company’s representatives can use this opportunity to learn more about the program and discuss their business proposal before completing the formal registration process.

A Detailed Proposal Requirements

Corporations are required to disclose many details during the registration process. This includes:

  • Company information such as the business’s founding date, a comprehensive description of the business’s operations, sales revenue figures, and the number of staff members they are employing.
  • Information related to the business they intend to start or purchase in British Columbia.
  • An explanation of how the new business in British Columbia will be related to the company’s existing main business.
  • A study on the new business’s commercial viability.
  • An estimate of the new business’s annual revenue.
  • A description of staff member roles in the new business in British Columbia as well as the parent company outside Canada.

The BC PNP may ask for more information during their initial assessment. Prospective corporations are encouraged to provide all relevant details to ensure the initial registration process goes smoothly. The company will also be required to pay a $300 CAD fee to process their registration request.

3. Registration

Your corporation should register in the online system showing their interest in applying for and securing Canadian work visas for your staff members. You will need to submit this information as part of your application:

  • A complete profile of your company
  • Investments you are ready to make in the BC economy.
  • Qualifications of the key staff who will apply for a Canada investor visa
  • At this point, the company should pay the $300 registration fee

4. Receive an Invitation to Apply

Once the BC PNP reviews the submitted registration information, they will determine whether the foreign company is eligible to proceed with its application. When your company is invited to apply, you must submit a full application within 90 days starting from the date the invitation was issued.

5. Complete and Submit the Application

The BC PNP will reach out to companies who qualify for the Strategic Projects program and invite them to complete a full application. The company and the staff members who will be coming to Canada will be required to fill out forms and provide relevant documents during this stage.

  • The corporate application fee of $3,500 CAD must also be paid at this stage.
  • There is also a $1,000 CAD application fee for each staff member applying under the program.
  • The BC PNP will then check the completed applications and request additional information or documents if they are needed.
  • If successful, the staff members will be invited to Vancouver for an in-person interview.

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Stage Two

6. Sign Performance Agreements

Once a positive decision regarding the application is made, the company will be required to sign the Performance Agreement between the corporation and the province of BC. All the approved vital staff members will also be asked to sign their agreements.

7. Receive Temporary Work Permits

The BC PNP will send a work permit support letter to each of the approved key staff members. With these letters, they can apply to the IRCC for a Canada work visa.

After signing their performance agreements, the staff members are required to arrive in BC within six months from the date they receive their work permit support letters. Within two months of their arrival, they need to complete an arrival report form to the BC PNP.

8. Build a Business and Receive a Provincial Nomination

  • Once the staff members receive their work permits, they can come to Canada and submit their arrival report form with BC PNP.
  • The corporation must then submit its final report with BC PNP and prove that they have met the conditions described in the Performance Agreement.
  • The BC PNP may then conduct interviews and visit the business site to verify that the information contained in the report is accurate.
  • If all the conditions and terms above are met, the business’s staff members in British Columbia will receive a permanent residency nomination.
  • They must then apply for their permanent resident status with IRCC within six months of receiving this nomination.

9. Applying For Permanent Residence

All qualifying senior employees of the company will be able to apply for permanent residence to the IRCC within 180 days since they receive a provincial nomination.

How ELAAR can help you?

Prospective corporations who wish to apply for the BC PNP EI Strategic Projects category should get in touch with our experts. Our team of Regulated Immigration Consultants can help optimize your application and business proposal to maximize your chances to bring your top talent and your business to British Columbia.

Let's Bring Your Top Talent and Busines to Canada

Bring your talented staff and business to Canada through the BC PNP EI Strategic Projects Pathway.

Check Eligibility

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