Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program

The Government of Alberta had announced changes to the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP) that were to take affect in early 2018. The announced changes have been postponed, and they are still accepting applications under their exiting programs.

The AINP has various economic programs available to foreign nationals who wish to establish themselves in Alberta. The two most popular programs are the “Employer-Driven” stream and the “Strategic Recruitment” stream.

Employer-Driven Stream

The Employer-Driven Stream is divided into three categories:

  1. Skilled Worker
  2. International Graduate
  3. Semi-Skilled Worker
Skilled Worker Category 

In order to qualify under the Skilled Worker Category, a foreign national must demonstrate at the time of submission of application and at the time the AINP assesses the application that they: 

  • Have a permanent and full-time job offer by an Alberta employer in an occupation that falls under National Occupation Classification (NOC) code 0, A or B;
  • Have the required education, training and work experience and any mandatory licensing for the position and to meet the requisite AINP criteria;
  • Hold a valid work permit if currently working in Alberta;
  • Hold valid status in their current country of residence if not currently working in Alberta; and
  • Intend to live permanently in Alberta.

If a foreign national is living abroad and receives a job offer from an Alberta employer and wishes to come to Canada under the Skilled Worker Category, the Alberta employer must demonstrate to the AINP that they have made significant efforts to hire a Canadian or a permanent resident. 

International Graduate Category 

To receive a nomination certificate under the International Graduate Category, a foreign national must demonstrate at the time of submission of application and at the time the AINP assesses the application that they:

  • Have a permanent and full-time job offer by an Alberta employer in an occupation that falls under NOC code 0, A, B or C, and that the occupation is not on the list of ineligible occupations;
  • Do not have a job offer in a position that is on the International Graduate Category ineligible category;
  • Are working full-time in Alberta in the position stated in the application, and for the employer who is supporting their application;
  • Hold a current and valid post-graduation work permit;
  • Have obtained a certificate, diploma or degree from an AINP approved institution in Alberta or a publicly funded college, trade school or university in Canada. The program must have been at minimum one year (two semesters) in duration; and
  • Have, at minimum, CLB (Canadian Language Benchmark) 4 in either English or French, in all four abilities, for those who have a job offer in a NOC C occupation; and
  • Intend to live permanently in Alberta.

 Foreign nationals currently working and residing outside of Alberta do not qualify for the International Graduate Category.

Semi-Skilled Worker Category 

The Semi-Skilled Worker Category is for foreign nationals who are currently residing and working in Alberta in one of five eligible industries. Only certain occupations qualify for processing under this program: 

  • Food and beverage processing
    • Food and Beverage Production Worker (NOC 9617)
    • Bakery Production Worker (NOC 9617)
    • Food and Beverage Processing Equipment Cleaner (NOC 9617)
    • Industrial Butchers and Meat Cutters (NOC 9462)
    • Poultry Production Workers (NOC 9462)
  • Hotel and lodging
    • Food and Beverage Servers (NOC 6513)
    • Room Attendants (NOC 6731)
    • Front Desk Agent/Clerk (NOC 6525)
  • Manufacturing – various occupations including, but not limited to:
    • Shippers and Receivers (NOC 1521)
    • Heavy Equipment Operators (NOC 7521)
    • Oil and Gas Well Drilling and Related Workers and Service Operators (NOC 8412)
    • Machine Operators, Mineral and Metal Processing (NOC 9411)
    • Pulp Mill Machine Operators (NOC 9432)
    • Furniture Finishers and Refinishers (NOC 9535)
  • Long-haul trucking industry
    • Long-Haul Truck Driver (NOC 7511)
  • Foodservice industry
    • Food and Beverage Servers (NOC 6513)
    • Food Counter Attendants (NOC 6711)
    • Kitchen Helpers (NOC 6711)

To qualify under the Semi-Skilled Worker Category, a foreign national must demonstrate at the time of submission of application and at the time the AINP assesses the application that they: 

  1. Are currently working in Alberta on a work permit for an AINP semi-skilled occupation;
  2. Have completed at minimum education equivalent to high school;
  3. Have, at minimum, CLB 4 in either English or French, in all four abilities;
  4. Meet the additional criteria for their industry; and
  5. Intend to live permanently in Alberta.

Strategic Recruitment Stream

 The Strategic Recruitment Stream is divided into three categories:

  1. Compulsory and Optional Trades
  2. Engineering Occupations
  3. Post-Graduate Worker 
Compulsory and Optional Trades

The Compulsory and Optional Trades Category is for foreign nationals who have a valid trade certificate in Alberta or who have been recognized by the Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training (AIT).

To qualify under this category, a foreign national must demonstrate at the time of submission of application and at the time the AINP assesses the application that they: 

  1. Have a valid Alberta Qualification Certificate, or have a valid Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training (AIT) recognized trade certificate, in a compulsory or optional trade;
  2. Are residing in Alberta with a valid work permit in the trade in which they are certified;
  3. Are working in Alberta in their trade for an Alberta employer, or have previously worked in Alberta for an Alberta employer for at least six months in the previous two years;
  4. Have, at minimum, CLB 4 in either English or French, in all four abilities for those working as a Parts Technician; and
  5. Intend to live permanently in Alberta.
Engineering Occupations

The Engineering Occupations Category is for those foreign nationals who hold credentials as an engineer, designer or drafter and have Alberta work experience in an eligible occupation. To qualify under this category, a foreign national must demonstrate at the time of submission of application and at the time the AINP assesses the application that they: 

  • Are currently residing in Alberta;
  • Are currently working in Alberta for an Alberta employer, or have worked within in the last two years in Alberta either as a contract worker or directly with an Alberta employer;
  • Hold the required education, training and experience as an engineer, designer or drafter;
  • Work in an occupation that is on the AINP Strategic Recruitment Stream Engineering Occupations list;
  • Have a “Letter of No Objection” from the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA) if their occupation falls under NOC 211, 2131, 2132, 2133, 2134, 2141, 2143, 2144, or 2145,   or that they are registered as a foreign licensee with APEGA. If they are working in an occupation that falls under NOC 2231, 2232, 2241 or 2253, a “Letter of No Objection” is not required; and
  • Intend to live permanently in Alberta.
Post-Graduate Worker

The Post-Graduate Worker Category is for foreign nationals who can demonstrate at the time of submission of application and at the time the AINP assesses the application that they: 

  • Have graduated from an AINP recognized post-secondary institution in Alberta. The program must have been at minimum one year (two semesters) in duration;
  • Are currently working full-time in Alberta for an Alberta employer in an occupation that falls under NOC code 0, A, B or C, and that the occupation is not on the list of ineligible occupations;
  • Hold a current and valid post-graduation work permit;
  • Have, at minimum, CLB 4 in either English or French, in all four abilities, for those who have a job offer in a NOC C occupation; and 
  • Intend to live permanently in Alberta.


Nomination Certificates
 

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.