HomeCanada ImmigrationRural and Northern Immigration Pilot Application Process

Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot Application Process

The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot is a community-driven program and was launched in 2019 as an initiative to roll out the benefits of economic immigration to smaller communities by creating a path to permanent residence for skilled foreign workers who want to live and work in any of the participating communities.

The country Canada is well-known for accepting high in-take of immigrants. However, under the present immigration system, the overwhelming majority of latest immigrants prefer to live in major cities like Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver.

The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot seeks to bring a change to this by helping smaller communities to draw in newcomers and support their settlement.

The pilot program accepts applications from rural and northern communities that want to participate.

The communities accepted receive support from the federal government to assist them in identifying and choosing new candidates for permanent residency.

The newcomers are expected to possess a positive impact on economic development.

This program builds on the successes of the Atlantic Immigration Pilot program (AIP) which was launched in 2017. AIP is originally designed to increase immigration to Canada’s Atlantic Region by pairing up potential newcomers with employers from the region.

There are four steps to applying for permanent residence under this pilot.

  • make sure you meet both
    • IRCC eligibility requirements and
    • the community-specific requirements.
  • Find an eligible job with an employer in one of the participating communities.
  • Once you’ve got an employment offer, submit your application for recommendation to the community.
  • If a community recommends you, apply for permanent residence.

Each community also will have its own

  • additional eligibility requirements
  • job search process
  • community recommendation application process

This information is available on the community’s website.

Participating communities

Community Community website
North Bay, ON https://northbayrnip.ca/
Sudbury, ON https://investsudbury.ca/why-sudbury/move-to-sudbury/rnip/
Timmins, ON www.timminsedc.com
Sault Ste. Marie, ON www.welcometossm.com
Thunder Bay, ON https://gotothunderbay.ca/
Brandon, MB www.economicdevelopmentbrandon.com
Altona/Rhineland, MB www.seedrgpa.com
Moose Jaw, SK https://www.moosejawrnip.ca/
Claresholm, AB www.claresholm.ca
Vernon, BC https://rnip-vernon-northok.ca/
West Kootenay (Trail, Castlegar, Rossland, Nelson), BC https://wk-rnip.ca/

What you Should Expect from a Community

This pilot is community-driven, meaning the communities will

  • assess prospective candidates who
    • best fit the economic needs of those community
    • have an authentic employment opportunity that meets their community requirements
    • have the intention of staying within the community
  • recommend candidates for permanent residence to IRCC for a final judgment
  • connect newcomers with settlement services and mentoring opportunities with established members of the community.

Eligibility Requirements for The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot Program

To be eligible for the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot Program, you will be required to meet all IRCC eligibility requirements. You must

  • have qualifying work experience or have graduated from a publicly funded post-secondary institution within the recommending community
  • meet or exceed the language requirements
  • meet or exceed the academic requirements
  • prove you’ve got enough money to support your transition into the community
  • have the intention to live in the community
  • meet community-specific requirements

If you meet all of the aforementioned requirements, then, you can start looking for an eligible job within the community.

Work experience

You need 1 year of continuous work experience (at least 1,560 hours) within the past 3 years.

To calculate your hours of labor experience

  • count the hours worked in part-time and full-time jobs
    • The hours must be in one occupation, but they could be with different employers.
    • The hours must be over a period of a minimum of 12 months.
    • These working hours are often inside or outside Canada.
      • If you worked in Canada, you must have been permitted to work in Canada.
    • don’t count hours you weren’t given payments for (volunteering or unpaid internships don’t count)
    • don’t count hours for which you were self-employed

Your work experience must include

  • most of the principal duties and every one the essential duties listed in your National Occupational Classification (NOC)
  • the activities listed within the lead statement of your NOC

You can see which duties are involved by searching your job title on the NOC website.

International students

You’re exempt from the aforementioned experience criteria if you’re a foreign student who graduated with

  • A degree, diploma, certificate, or trade or apprenticeship from a post-secondary program of two years or longer, and you
    • were studying as a full-time student for the entire duration of the 2+ years
    • received the credential at most 18 months before your application for permanent residence
    • were within the community for a minimum of 16 of the last 24 months spent studying to obtain your credential


  • A master’s degree or higher and you
    • were studying as a full-time student for the duration of your degree
    • obtained your degree at most 18 months before your application for permanent residence
    • were within the community for the length of your studies

You cannot apply as a foreign student if your credentials are from a program during which

  • studying English or French made up over half the program
  • distance learning made up over half the program
  • a scholarship or fellowship was awarded that needs you to return to your home country to use what you learned

Language Requirements

You must meet the minimum language requirements which are on the basis of the NOC category that applies to the work offered within the community. this will either be the

  • Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLB) or
  • Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens (NCLC)

The minimum language requirements for every NOC category are

  • NOC 0 and A: CLB/NCLC 6
  • NOC C and D: CLB/NCLC 4

You must submit your results from a delegated language test. These results must not be older than 2 years once you apply.

Educational Requirements

You must have one of the subsequent:

  • a Secondary school (high school) diploma gotten from Canada, or
  • a Canadian post-secondary certificate, diploma or degree, or
  • an educational credential assessment (ECA) report, from a delegated organization or professional body, showing that you have completed a foreign credential that’s equivalent to a Canadian Secondary school (high school) or post-secondary certificate, diploma, or degree (your ECA report must not be older than 5 years on the date of your application).

Settlement Funds

Unless you’re already working legally in Canada as at the time you apply, you must be able to prove you’ve got sufficient money to support yourself and any relations while you get settled in your community.

You must prove you’ve got enough money to support any relations you’ll have, regardless of if they’re not coming to Canada with you.

Intend to Stay in the Community

To participate in the pilot, you must intend to stay in the community.

Community-Specific Requirements

Each community will have additional requirements for applicants.

Program Requirements – Communities

In order to be eligible to apply, a community must have a population of at most fifty thousand (50,000) or less and be located a minimum of 75km from the core of a census metropolitan area, or have a population of 200,000 or less and be considered remove from other larger cities. Communities must be located in one among the subsequent provinces or territories:

  • Alberta
  • British Columbia
  • Manitoba
  • Northwest Territories
  • Nunavut
  • Ontario
  • Saskatchewan
  • Yukon

Communities must submit an economic development plan supported by a local economic development organization that will manage the pilot.

Communities also must demonstrate they possess employment opportunities available for newcomers and also have the power to support the settlement of newcomers.


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