Before the winter holiday season, the Government of Canada decided to make a present for the immigration community and announced that the Atlantic Immigration Pilot becomes a permanent immigration program. The Pilot, which began in 2017 has brought over 10,000 new permanent residents to Atlantic Canada, has aided communities to flourish and prosper while also contributing to population growth.The new start of the Program is set for January 1, 2022, and effective March 6, 2022, eligible candidates will be able to submit applications for PR under the new framework.
Good news for international students
Becoming a permanent program is very good news for international students, as it opens an additional pathway for them to obtain the status of Canadian permanent resident. One of the three streams of the program is called the Atlantic International Graduate Program and is intended for foreign graduates of the Atlantic colleges and universities whose Academic program lasted for at least two years.
Those graduates who resided in the Maritimes for 16 months or more in the last two years prior to graduation are eligible to apply for the program. Moreover, there is no requirement for previous work experience, and the only requirement is obtaining a job offer from one of the over 3,000 designated local employers.
The job offer must be full-time or at least 30 hours weekly in a skilled occupation to qualify. Furthermore, there is no need for the employer to get an LMIA to hire you. The Atlantic International Graduate Program is a good alternative for International Graduates who cannot score enough points in the Express Entry or qualify through the provincial streams for students. Many international students in the Atlantic already received a PR in this program.
Atlantic Immigration Statistics
The program started to grant PR status in 2017. The number of approved cases was steadily growing and in 2019 it has reached a record high of 4,140 newcomers. Due to the pandemic, the number of AIPP immigrants has decreased three times, so in 2020, IRCC had approved only 1,705 PR applications under the Atlantic Immigration Pilot.
The situation started to improve in 2021. So far, as of September 30, Canada welcomed 2,700 AIPP applicants this year. Since the launch of the program, 10,135 foreigners immigrated to Atlantic Canada under the AIPP.
The biggest share of the Atlantic newcomers in this program settled in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick – 42% and 40.5% of the total, respectively. Another 9.5% of immigrants settled in Newfoundland and Labrador, and 8.1% in Prince Edward Island.
The program will have some new requirements
In order to secure more options for applicants, when a permanent residence application is in process, an AIPP applicant who wishes to change employers must notify the province and IRCC, receive a revised endorsement certificate, and obtain a letter of support from the province. In this case, officials will put the AIPP PR application on hold until the relevant documentation arrives.
The Immigration Department also introduced a new requirement for employers. In order to meet the requirements, employers will be required to go through free virtual intercultural competence training upon hiring in order to better comprehend cultural dynamics in the workplace and create welcoming work environments for new employees.
Atlantic Canada may face a boom of the new students
The popularity of study in Atlantic Canada is constantly growing. More and more international students prefer the Maritime provinces over more expensive Toronto or Vancouver. With the expansion of the Atlantic Immigration Program, education in Atlantic Canada looks even more attractive now.
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