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B.C. boosts Provincial Nominee Program

A new skilled immigration system has been put in place to meet B.C.’s economic needs.

The provincial government has launched a new intake system for the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) so it aligns with B.C.’s labour market and economic development priorities.

Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour, said: “We want to make sure that when immigrants come to British Columbia they will be successful and support the labour market needs in our diverse, strong and growing economy. That is why we redesigned our system to ensure that the process is timely, transparent and focused on meeting our economic labour demands.”

The PNP is the province’s only direct economic immigration tool for bringing in new British Columbians.

B.C.͛s quota of PNP nominations is set by the federal government.

B.C. is expected to lead the country in economic growth in 2016. Although British Columbians are front of the line for those job opportunities, economic immigration will play a role in meeting the labour demands of our diverse, strong and growing economy.

The province needs new residents to assist in filling the nearly one million job openings due to retirements and economic growth.

The PNP’s new Skills Immigration Registration System (SIRS) is a points-based system that gives candidates a registration score that determines whether they are invited to apply. Their score is based on a number of factors that reflect an individual’s ability to succeed in the labour market and contribute to the provincial economy such as level of education, years of direct work experience and a B.C. employment offer.

The new system more closely aligns with the federal government’s immigration process for skilled labour. For example, B.C.͛ stech sector is consistently growing faster than the overall economy. For many employers their need for talent is urgent, especially in highly specialized areas.

The new registration system allows employers to access skilled labour quickly to bring highly skilled newcomers into the province to support continued growth in the industry.͟

For 2015, B.C.’s PNP allocation was 5,500 and the province negotiated an additional 300 to achieve 5,800 more than any other province.

The 2016 PNP allocation from the federal government has yet to be confirmed. B.C. continues to work with the federal government to increase economic immigration and receive more PNP allocations. ‡

Since the 2001 inception of the program, more than 34,000 workers and entrepreneurs have been attracted to the province through the PNP. ‡In 2014, 80 percent of B.C.͛s total immigrants came to British Columbia through federal immigration streams.