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IMMIGRATION ISSUES #027: New and re-opened programs offer more immigration opportunities

New pilot project in Atlantic Canada

The Federal government has just announced an exciting new pilot project for Canada’s Atlantic region. Starting in March 2017, under the Atlantic Immigration Pilot Project the four Atlantic provinces (New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island) will accept up to 2000 applicants and their families as new permanent residents.

The program has three streams: the Atlantic High-Skilled Program, the Atlantic Intermediate-Skilled Program, and the Atlantic International Graduate Program. The first two streams require applicants to have at least 1,560 hours of qualifying work experience, inside or outside Canada, in the past three years. There is no work experience requirement for international graduates.

Workers must have at least a high school diploma, and international graduates must have completed a minimum two-year degree, diploma, certificate, or trade/apprenticeship credential from a recognized, publicly-funded institution in an Atlantic province. All applicants must also score at least a Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level of 4.0 in all four language abilities from an approved language test.

Applicants from all three streams must also have a high-skilled or intermediate-skilled job offer from an employer in one of the Atlantic provinces. Employers do not need a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) and work permits will be available to applicants who are needed to fill an immediate labour shortage while their permanent resident applications are being processed.

Ontario Provincial Nominee Program is Re-Opening

Ontario’s Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) is set to re-open next week. Six thousand applicants will be accepted for 2017 under three streams: the International Masters Graduate Stream, the International PhD Graduate Stream, and the Ontario Express Entry Human Capital Priorities Stream.

The Masters Graduate and International PhD Graduate Streams are popular because candidates can apply without having a job offer from a Canadian employer. All applicants must have earned a Masters or PhD designation from an eligible publicly-funded university in Ontario.

For the Ontario Express Entry Human Capital Priorities Stream, the OINP will select candidates from the Express Entry pool who score at least 400 points and who have indicated in their profiles that they wish to live in Ontario. Selected candidates will receive a “Notification of Interest” from the province and then they have 45 days to apply to the OINP. If Ontario nominates a candidate, the nominee will get a Nomination Certificate worth 600 bonus Express Entry points. These bonus points will virtually guarantee that the nominee receives an Invitation to Apply for permanent residence under Express Entry.

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