From mechanical engineers to technical sales specialists, the British Columbia Tech Pilot program is specifically designed for foreign tech workers looking to make a significant career move by settling in British Columbia (BC) Canada with the support of local employers. BC is one of 13 provinces in Canada that’s famous for its vibrant metropolitan cities such as Vancouver and Victoria. More importantly, the province is a blossoming technology hub with a high demand for skilled tech workers.
Immigration Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) recently announced that the BC Tech Pilot will become a permanent immigration program. Introduced in 2017 as a temporary gateway for skilled immigration, the Pilot has nominated over 6,000 immigrants for permanent residence and will continue to bring more innovative, specialized, and high-tech workers to Canada.
What is the British Columbia Tech Pilot?
The BC Tech Pilot is an immigration stream managed by the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP). The BC PNP nominates foreign workers for permanent residency who meet its labour market needs. Currently, the province has an ongoing demand for skilled tech professionals in 29 eligible occupations.
The BC Tech Pilot supports local tech companies to fill skills shortages. Companies attract international talent by offering them employment contracts and life in Canada as permanent residents through the pilot program.
BC PNP Tech Eligibility Requirements
- Job Offer
Candidates must obtain job offers (minimum of one-year contracts) from British Columbia employers. The job offer must be in one of the 29 in-demand tech occupations.
- No LMIA Required
Another incredible benefit of the British Columbia Tech Pilot is that candidates don’t require Labour Market Impact Assessments (LMIAs) to validate their job offers.
- Work Experience
Candidates must have two years of directly related work experience in one of the eligible occupations.
- Settlement funds
Candidates must show that they can support themselves and their dependents.
- Language Proficiency
Candidates must meet the minimum language requirements for skill level B occupations of the National Occupation Classification (NOC) system.
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The BC Tech Pilot is a multi-step application process. To apply, a candidate must register for the BC Tech Pilot and provide information about their job offer and the supporting British Columbian company. Weekly invitations are issued to qualified candidates. In order to be issued an Invitation to Apply (ITA), both the candidate and the employer must meet all program requirements at the time of registration.
Candidates with invitations can apply for the BC Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP). The Tech Pilot processes applications in 2-3 months on average. Successful candidates are issued nominations to apply to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) for permanent residence.
Work in Canada’s Thriving Tech Sector
According to a 2019 Report, Canada’s tech industry employment increased by an estimated 249,000 new jobs since 2010. The Canadian tech sector’s job growth rate has exceeded that of the US with its 2019 numbers, and critical technology occupations will experience double-digit growth between 2018 and 2026.
Fortunately, the technology sector remained unaffected during the pandemic. A significant example of a Canadian-based tech company experiencing exponential growth is Shopify, which became Canada’s most valuable company in 2020. The huge e-commerce company is worth over $140 billion, according to the Royal Bank of Canada.
Canada plans on welcoming 1.23 million newcomers by 2023. In 2021 alone, 80,800 candidates will receive nominations through the Provincial Nomination Programs (PNPs). Ensure that your BC Tech Pilot application is fully optimized for success with the professional help of certified immigration consultants. For more information about British Columbia’s Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP) and how to apply, visit CanadianVisa.org.