New Immigration Pilot Program Launched by the Canadian Government for Rural and Northern Communities

New Immigration Pilot Program - Canadian Government

A new five-year pilot immigration program launched by the government of Canada for rural and northern communities in Ontario, Western Canada and Canada’s three territories to help them attract and retain the foreign skilled and capable immigrants.

Territories and provinces that eligible under this new community-driven program to nominate foreign workers of various skills for the permanent residence visa are as follows:

For communities to be eligible under Rural and Northern Pilot program as stated by Immigration, Refugees & Citizenship Canada (IRCC) they can be a city with a population of 50,000 or less OR located at least 75 km from a core metropolitan area of 100,000 or more OR a city of population up to 200,000 that qualifies as remote. This new program will operate alongside the Provincial Nomination Program (PNP) like the Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program (AIPP).


AIPP is an employer-driven immigration program that allows the designated employer of the provinces – Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador to hire the skilled and capable immigrants for job positions that they are not able to find locally in their respective employer.

“By creating an immigration pilot aimed at rural and northern communities, we’re looking to ensure that the benefits of immigration are shared across the country,” Canada’s Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship (IRCC), Ahmed Hussen, said at the lunch of the new pilot immigration program on January 24.

Bernadette Jordan, Minister of Rural Economic Development of Canada, said the pilot’s community-driven approach is essential. “The Pilot will support the economic development of smaller communities by testing new, community-driven approaches to address their diverse labor market needs.”

Eligible communities in the identified province and territories who want to participate in the pilot program needs to submit the application that shows they are able to meet the program’s eligibility criteria and how the immigration will promote the local economic development priorities.

IRCC has issued guidance that says local community and economic development organization will be responsible for recruiting and assessing immigration candidates based on local economic needs and job openings, and recommending selected candidates for permanent residence in the province/territory.
The last date for the submission of applications March 1, 2019 and the name of the selected communities will be released in spring.

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