Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program

In June 2018 Alberta introduced two new streams: the “Alberta Opportunity Stream” and the “Alberta Express Entry Stream”.

Alberta Opportunity Stream

The Alberta Opportunity Stream has replaced the “Employer-Driven Stream” and the “Strategic Recruitment Stream”.

In order to qualify under the Alberta Opportunity Stream, a foreign national must demonstrate at the time of submission of application and at the time the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP) assesses the application that they:

  1. Are currently residing and working in Alberta in an occupation not listed on the Alberta Opportunity Stream Ineligible list. If the foreign national is a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) holder, the occupation must also not be listed on the Government of Canada's Refusal to Process a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) list for Alberta. At the time of assessment, the foreign national must be working in an occupation that matches their work experience at the time of submission;
  2. Hold a valid work permit for a eligible occupation. The work permit can be issued based on either:
    • A Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA); or 
    • An LMIA exempt work permit under an international trade agreement (such as NAFTA), intra-company transfer (ICT) or under the International Experience Canada (IEC) program; or
    • An LMIA exempt work permit as a PGWP holder. If the foreign national is a PGWP holder they must have met the requirements for a post-secondary education credential from a public or private post-secondary institution in Alberta which is approved by Alberta Advanced Education, and their post-secondary educational credential must be on the List of Alberta Advanced Education Approved Secondary Credentials. If they completed a one-year post-graduate certificate, PGWP holders must be working in an occupation in Alberta which is related to their field of study or their undergraduate or graduate field of study outside of Canada; 
  3. Have at minimum the required full-time work experience:
    • 12 months of full-time work experience in their occupation in Alberta within the last 18 months; or
    • 24 months of full-time work experience in their occupation in Canada and/or abroad within the last 30 months; or
    • 6 months of full time work experience in their occupation in Alberta within the last 18 months if they are a PGWP holder, and the work experience must be related to their field of study; 
  4. Hold the required licensing, registration or certification to be employed in their current occupation in Alberta;  
  5. Have a full-time offer of employment from an employer in Alberta  to work in their current occupation in Alberta;
  6. Have, at minimum, CLB (Canadian Language Benchmark) 4 in either English or French, in each of the four abilities. Starting on June 14, 2019, a minimum CLB 5 in either English or French, in each of the four abilities, will be required. For those applying under National Occupation Classification (NOC) code 3413 (Nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates), a minimum of CLB 7 must be demonstrated in each of the four abilities;
  7. Have, at minimum, a high school diploma from their country of origin. Starting on January 1, 2021, all applicants must hold a diploma that is at minimum equivalent to an Alberta high school diploma; and
  8. Meet minimum income threshold requirements based on family size.  

Certain individuals are not eligible for the Alberta Opportunity Stream:

  • Refugee claimants ore are individuals going through the removal process; 
  • Part-time workers;
  • Independent contractors, business owners or temporary agency workers;
  • Individuals who work in a place of employment that is not zoned for commercial/industrial operations (foe example, a home-based business);
  • Individuals who telecommute from a location outside Alberta; and
  • Individuals who hold certain non-LMIA based work permits, such as C10 (Significant Benefit) and Francophone Mobilité.

The AINP is authorized by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (Immigration Canada) to issue a maximum number of Nomination Certificates per year. In 2017, the maximum Nomination Certificates that they were allowed to issue was 5,500.

Once nominated by a province or territory, a foreign national must apply to Immigration Canada to become a permanent resident. Only once the Nomination Certificate is issued by the province or territory, a foreign national can then submit their application for permanent residence with Immigration Canada. The foreign national will need to submit the required forms and supporting documentation to Immigration Canada, along with the Nomination Certificate. Immigration Canada will assess the foreign national against their own criteria, as well as completing the required medical and criminal inadmissibility assessments. If the application for permanent residence is successful, Immigration Canada will issue a document called a Confirmation of Permanent Residence. With this document, the foreign national may then complete the landing process in order to obtain permanent resident status.

A Nomination Certificate is not a status document. If a foreign national is living and working in Canada, during the processing of their permanent residence application, he or she must continue to maintain valid status in Canada. The Nomination Certificate, along with a support letter from the issuing province or territory, can be used, however, to help extend one’s work permit.

Alberta Express Entry Stream

To qualify under the Alberta Express Entry Stream, a foreign national must be in the Federal Express Entry pool of applicants. Alberta will select qualified candidates from the pool of applicants that have demonstrated strong ties to Alberta and who can help support Alberta’s economic and diversification targets. Qualified foreign nationals who receive a Notification of Interest letter in their Federal Express Entry portal, must send their letter to the AINP within two weeks in order to participate in this stream.