In Immigration

On August 15, 2023, the Ministry of Municipal Affairs of British Columbia released the BC PNP Statistical Report and Year in Review 2022 (“Report”), which provides a comprehensive summary and is packed with valuable information. While the information shared in this Report is very useful, perhaps it is more enlightening when compared to previous years, specifically 2020 and 2021.

If we take a quick glance at the Reports for 2020 (page 15), 2021 (page 18) and 2022 (page 23) – please see snapchats of the relevant sections below – there is one fact that we want to highlight: provincial nominees in the Vancouver Island / Coast region increased by more than 64.37%, making it the region with second biggest percentage increase from 2021 after the North Coast which grew 86.84%.

Chart 2022 Skills Immigration Nominees by Development Region

Chart 2021 Skills Immigration Nominees by Development Region

In comparison the levels of provincial nominees in 2021 compared to 2021 did not change as much, as you can see in the snapchat from 2020 below:

Chart 2020 Skills Immigration Nominees by Development Region

While it is true that while the overall number of nominees any region are still small compared to that of the Mainland / Southwest region, it is expected that this gap will continue to decrease in the upcoming years.

The main reason behind the big increase for the Vancouver Island / Coast and North Coast region from 2021 to 2021 are two:
1) The regional rounds of invitations that the BC PNP began holding from August 10, 2022, which targeted applicants outside the Metro Vancouver area, and
2) The changes undergone by the BC PNP Skills Immigration Program Guide on November 16, 2022, particularly the Scoring Factors, where more points were allocated to applicants working in outside the Metro Vancouver Regional District (Area 1).

In order to illustrate how relevant element 2) above is, let’s analyze the following example. An applicant who has been working under a valid work permit in Victoria for one (1) year full time, let’s say as a Legal Assistant (NOC 13111), who has received a job offer and support from a BC employer to continue working in that occupation is more likely to receive an Invitation to Apply through the BC PNP – Skills Immigration – Skill Worker stream, than an applicant based in Vancouver with identical profile.

Given that Victoria is located in the Vancouver Island / Coast region (Area 3), the Victoria applicant after one (1) year of full-time employment in Victoria as Legal Assistant would have earned 25 more points than the Vancouver applicant, located in the Metro Vancouver Regional District (Area 1). The latter earns 0 points where for the place of employment.

The latest cut-off for the BC PNP – Skills Immigration – Skill Worker not linked to the Express Entry was 107 points on August 9, 2023. Assuming that score 25 points represent 23.36% of the points.

Without question the Metro Vancouver Regional District is still the main destination in British Columbia for newcomers. However, given the modifications made to the BC PNP prospective international students searching for an educational program and academic institution that serve as the starting point to obtain Permanent Residence afterwards, will certainly be targeting the Vancouver Island / Coast region.

An Associate of

Crease Harman LLP