Starting a business in Canada
If you want to establish a business in Canada and become a permanent resident this may be the category for you.
Business owners, entrepreneurs and farmers who wish to buy or create businesses in Canada may be eligible to apply for permanent residence through provincial nominee programs. Most Provinces offer various immigrant investment programs in order to bring new business to the province to create jobs. If the province approves your business idea and plan, they will issue you with a work permit until you meet their requirements to be sponsored as a permanent resident.
These programs are considered top priority by the provinces. Although of the each province’s eligibility criteria are different, they share the same basic rules.
Here are the basic criteria for the business PNP programs:
- You must intend to buy or establish a business and settle in the province;
- You must invest a minimum amount of money required by the province;
- You must have a minimum net worth as required by the province (This is in addition to your required investment in the business);
- You must have the required management or operations experience;
- You may be required to make an exploratory visit to the province;
- Your business must create the required amount of jobs for Canadian Citizens or permanent residents;
- Like all new immigrants, you must meet the medical and security requirements of Citizenship and Immigration Canada.
So whether you want to own a farm in Alberta or establish an IT business in British Colombia, this program can help you achieve your goal.
Please note: Not every province offers this category or the category may be on hold / suspended.
Below are the business programs province by province:
Alberta Business Provincial Nominee Program (AINP)
- Self employed farmer program
Currently the only program Alberta has available is the self-employed farmer program. This program is for experienced farmers who wish to buy or establish a working farm in Alberta.
British Columbia Business Provincial Nominee Propgram
- Entrepreneur Category
This category is for Entrepreneurs who wish to purchase or start a new business anywhere in BC.
- Regional Entrepreneur Category
This Category is for Entrepreneurs who wish to purchase or start a business outside the Vancouver and Abbotsford metropolitan areas; this stream requires less capital than the regular entrepreneur stream because BC is trying to encourage investment outside of the Vancouver and Abbotsford areas.
- Strategic Project Category
This is for business owners who wish to open a branch or subsidiary office of their already existing business anywhere in BC; this stream requires less capital than the Entrepreneur streams because BC is trying to encourage international businesses to come to the province.
BC Entrepreneur PNP Points Cut-Offs
BC Entrepreneur PNP Notifications
Manitoba Business Provicial Nominee Program
- Manitoba Business program
Manitoba offers a business program which is for entrepreneurs, investors or farmers who wish to open a business or farm anywhere in Manitoba.
New Brunswick Business Provincial Nominee Program
- Business Applicant Category
This is for Entrepreneurs who wish to purchase or start a business anywhere in New Brunswick.
Newfoundland and Labrador Business Provincial Nominee Program
The Newfoundland and Labrador business category is currently under revision and is not open to new applicants.
Northwest Territories Business Immigrant Nominee Program
- Entrepreneur Business Category
This category is for people who wish to purchase or start a business anywhere in the Northwest Territories.
- Self-Employed Business Category
This category is for skilled professionals whose skills are in high demand in the Northwest Territories and wish to start a business on their own. The criteria are similar to the skilled worker stream.
Nova Scotia Business Provincial Nominee Program
- Family Business Category
This category is for people who have relatives in Nova Scotia who also own a business. The applicant can immigrate to Canada and work in their relative’s business. If you do not have a relative in Nova Scotia, you cannot apply.
Nunavut Business Immigrant Nominee Program
Nunavut does not currently participate in the PNP.
Ontario Business Provincial Nominee Program (OINP)
- Opportunities Ontario: Investors category
This category is for entrepreneurs who wish to invest in or start a business anywhere in Ontario.
Prince Edward Island Business Provincial Nominee Program
- PEI Business program
This program is for people who wish to buy or start a business or buy at least 33.3% of an existing business in PEI.
Quebec Business Immigration
To learn more about investing in Quebec, go to Immigration-Quebec’s website.
Saskatchewan Business Provincial Nominee Program (SINP)
- Entrepreneur category
This category is for entrepreneurs who wish to invest in or start a business anywhere in Saskatchewan.
- Farm owner operator
The Farm Owner / Operator category is for individuals with proven experience in farming and substantial capital available to invest in a farming operation and who intend to purchase and operate a farming operation in Saskatchewan.
- Young Farmer category
The Young Farmer stream of the Farm Owner / Operator Category is designed to allow young farming families to establish their lives and farming operations in the province’s rural areas.
Yukon Business Immigrant Nominee Program
- Yukon business Nominee Program
This category is for entrepreneurs who wish to invest in or start a business anywhere in Yukon.
Federal Investor Immigrant Program
Currently, there is also a federal program: The Immigrant Investor Venture Capital (IIVC) pilot program has been open since May 25, 2015 and is accepting applications until December 30, 2015. If you plan to invest and live in Canada, but not in the province of Quebec, this may be a fast-track to consider. The requirements are:
- CAD$10 million or more personal net worth. Your net worth cannot include any funds that have been inherited, or any funds earned through the sale of a principal residence.
- CAD$2 million or more invested in the Immigrant Investor Venture Capital Fund. This is an independent, professionally managed fund that invests in Canadian Start-up companies. You have no guaranteed return and you may lose all or part of your invested capital. It normally involves a 15 year term of investment, although details are finalized when you sign your investment contract.
- The fund will be closed when:
- 60 applications have been approved and permanent residence granted, OR
- 60 applications have been processed and a further 60 applications are on a separate waiting list, OR
- December 30, 2015 is reached.