2 New Alberta Immigration Programs

What are the new Alberta Immigration programs for business owners?

Alberta is launching two new immigration pathways to encourage international graduates to open businesses here in Alberta that will create new high-paying jobs and help diversify the economy in Alberta. 

According to the Government of Alberta (2020) “Starting October 26, 2020, recent international graduates from Alberta’s universities and colleges interested in launching business ventures and start-ups in Alberta can submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) under the new International Graduate Entrepreneur Immigration Stream. In January, Alberta will also launch the Foreign Graduate Start-up Visa Stream to attract talented international graduates from top U.S. universities and colleges to start businesses and settle in Alberta communities”.

Details on the International Graduate Entrepreneur Immigration Stream are available now. Information on the Foreign Graduate Start-up Visa Stream will be posted to the AINP website later this year.

If you are interested in studying in a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) in Alberta, that can help you to enter the International Graduate Entrepreneur Immigration Stream upon graduation. Create Career College is partnering with Lakeland College in Alberta. Upon completion of the EAP(English for Academic Purposes) program at Create Career College, students can directly enroll in an academic program of their interest at  Lakeland College without the need to provide an IELTS score.

New Alberta Immigration ProgramsOverview 

The Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP) streams are designed to help Alberta to recover its economy from the pandemic. Therefore, the province is hoping by launching two new immigration pathways will help Alberta to attract investment and create jobs. 

Alberta will nominate qualified international graduates from Alberta post-secondary institutions that establish or operate a business in Alberta to apply for permanent residence.

The new International Graduate Entrepreneur Stream is already open for Expressions of Interest.

International graduates from Alberta post-secondary institutions who are interested in establishing or operating a business in the province can apply.

Before candidates are being nominated for permanent residence. They must Initially establish or operate their business for at least 12 months while in Alberta on a work permit, and meet the terms of a Business Performance Agreement.  

Here are 5 steps to Permanent Residence

  1. Submit an Expression of Interest
  2. Submit Your Business Application Package
  3. Business Application assessment
  4. Establish Your Business in Alberta
  5. Final Report for AINP Nomination

Requirements for IGEIS

Area Requirement
Work Experience Have a minimum of 6 months of full-time work experience that can be a combination of actively managing or owning the business or equivalencies. For example, experience with a business incubator or business accelerator, or completion of entrepreneurship program courses.
Education Have completed at least two years of full-time education in Alberta, resulting in a degree or diploma from a designated (DLI) post-secondary institution in Alberta. Completion of the program of study must result in qualifying for a Post-Graduation Work Permit.
Work Permit Have a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) valid for at least 2 years at the time of your Expression of Interest (EOI) submission.
Language Have a minimum Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level of 7 for each in one of the following: Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking.
Business Establishment Must establish a new business or buy an existing business in Alberta with a minimum of 34% ownership. The proposed business type must not be on the list of ineligible businesses.

Factors that increase your chances

Criteria Adaptability factors
Economic benefit Can provide economic benefit to Alberta through:

  • Job creation.
  • Economic sector.
  • Business location (for example, rural).
  • Business succession.
  • Investment.
  • Developed intellectual property.
  • Partnership or support from business incubator/accelerator, venture capital or angel investor.
Age          21 to 49 years
Spouse Your spouse or common-law partner has at least one of the following:

  • At least 1 year of continuous full-time employment in Alberta.
  • At least 2 years of full-time study at a post-secondary institution in Alberta.
  • Minimum level CLB 5 in English or NCLC 5 in French in all 4 language abilities (Reading, Writing, Listening, Speaking).
Alberta relative You, or your spouse or common-law partner, have one or more of the following relatives living full-time in Alberta: father, step-father, mother, step-mother, child, step-child, sister, step-sister, brother, step-brother

Expression of Interest Pool

Candidates who meet the above criteria must submit an Expression of Interest to the AINP.

The AINP will review and score your EOI within 30 days of submission. The highest-ranking candidates will be requested to submit a Business Application.

EOI Points Breakdown:

Maximum 125 points (Business Establishment Factors: 75, Human Capital Factors: 25, and Adaptability Factors: 25) 

Detailed IGEIS Points Grid is available here