Canada has started accepting applications for permanent residence through the newly-announced Atlantic Immigration Program. Skilled foreign workers and international graduates can now apply through this pathway and settle in one of the four Atlantic provinces of Canada.
Canada decided to make the Atlantic Immigration Program permanent after the Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program turned out to be a huge success in attracting a high number of foreign nationals to these provinces. Earlier in mid-December, Immigration Minister Sean Fraser said that the Atlantic Immigration Pilot had made “incredible difference” in communities across the Atlantic region over the past few years. “It has brought us the resource we need most: more people. They’re skilled, they’re young and they’re staying. Now, we’re doubling down on what works by making it permanent, so we can continue attracting the best and brightest to our region and build a vibrant, prosperous future for Atlantic Canada.”
Atlantic Canada immigration
The Atlantic Provinces are eager to welcome more immigrants through the now permanent Atlantic Immigration Program. The Atlantic Provinces have huge demand for skilled workers and the low population growth rate is another reason why these provinces are keen to welcome more immigrants to their region.
Canada opened the Atlantic Immigration permanent program on March 6. Candidates who wish to settle in Newfoundland and Labrador, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia or Prince Edward Island, may submit their applications through the new program. However, it must be noted that the permanent program still retains the three important features that made the pilot program a success: a focus on employers, support for new immigrants to settle in the province and a collaborative approach across all Atlantic Provinces. Furthermore, under the permanent AIP, new immigrants will receive enhanced employer support through training. The program requirements have also been strengthened to make sure that the newcomers can successfully establish themselves in the region.
Programs under Atlantic Immigration Program
The Atlantic Immigration Program has three programs under it:
- The Atlantic High-Skilled Program
- The Atlantic Intermediate-Skilled Program
- The Atlantic International Graduate Program
The Atlantic High-skilled Program targets skilled workers with work experience in management, professional or technical/skilled areas and a job offer of at least one year.
Atlantic Intermediate-Skilled Program is for those who have received a job offer for a permanent job that requires high school education and/or job-specific training.
Atlantic International Graduate Program is for candidates who have a degree, diploma or another educational qualification gained from a publicly-funded institution in one of the Atlantic provinces of Canada. They must also have a job of at least one year. However, no work experience in needed.
Besides these requirements, all AIP candidates must also meet the language proficiency requirements as well as the settlement fund requirements.
Work experience requirements
Except for Atlantic International Graduate Program, work experience is necessary. The work experience must be paid and it can either be inside or outside Canada.
It should also be in one of the following National Occupational Classification (NOC) skill levels:
- NOC Skill Type 0 (management jobs such as restaurant managers, mine managers);
- NOC Skill Level A (professional jobs that usually need a degree from a university, such as doctors, dentists, architects);
- NOC Skill Level B (technical jobs and skilled trades such as chefs, electricians, plumbers), or;
- NOC Skill Level C (intermediate jobs that usually call for high school and/or job-specific training, such as industrial butchers, long-haul truck drivers, food and beverage servers).
Exemption for healthcare workers
For certain healthcare jobs, it is not mandatory for the candidates to have a job offers, which is at the same skill level as or higher than the qualifying work experience. For example, work experience as a practical nurse or registered nurse will be considered for the job offer of a nurse’s aide or orderly or patient service associate or home healthcare worker.