22 Nov Top 5 Tips for a Successful British Columbia Regional Pilot Program Application
On March 14 of this year, the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP) Entrepreneur Immigration Regional Pilot, a new path to the BC PNP, was launched. The purpose of this regional pilot is to foster economic growth and job creation in less populated regions, referred to as communities under the program, of British Columbia.It aims to more evenly distribute the economic benefits of immigration across the province.
As of March, more than 30 communities had joined the pilot. There are three primary qualifications for a community to participate in the program; have a population of less than 75,000, be located more than 30 kilometers from a larger city and have support services established to help business owners and their families settle. Each community also determines their own specific priority industry sectors for which proposed businesses must align.
This is an attractive path to immigration in British Columbia as the requirements of the applicant are less stringent than the regular entrepreneur stream to BC PNP. Applicants to the regional pilot have lower net worth and investment requirements, as well as a lower English language proficiency expectation. As such, it is likely to be competitive. Below are five tips to ensuring an applicant stands out from the rest.
One of the key differences to this path is that it starts with an exploratory visit. During this time, the applicant will meet with an appointed representative in the selected community. Do not underestimate the importance and benefits of this visit. While it’s true that the focus of this visit is about making the applicant’s case for consideration into the program, it is also the applicant’s chance to gain hands on exposure to the community, its residents and its culture.
The ultimate purpose of the exploratory visit is to obtain a community referral. This is one of the most distinct procedural features of the pilot program and the applicant cannot move forward without obtaining this. In addition to a strong business case, it is imperative to make the specific benefit to the community the focus of the visit. This isn’t just about proving the applicant is a skilled entrepreneur with an exceptional business concept. It is the applicant’s opportunity to prove they have the intent and desire to fully integrate into and be an active part of the community.
The best way to make a strong case for the above is an expertly crafted business plan which will artfully tie in these personal aspects with the business case. Though one of the best ways to gather pertinent information about the desired community is to see it in person, for many it is likely impractical to travel to the community prior to the exploratory visit. Due to this reason and more, hiring a professional Canadian-based business plan writing company is strongly recommended. They will have access to specific databases and local knowledge that outside and foreign parties will not.
A well-crafted business plan will make a very strong case but, since the applicant will meet directly with the community representative, they must be well-versed and able to speak directly to the information and data presented. The best way to do this is to review the business plan repeatedly and at length and ask questions of advisors and the business plan expert prior to their exploratory visit.
During the exploratory visit, it is important to gather as much information as possible about the community to strengthen the case at a later stage of the application process. The top candidates, based on a Registration Score, will be invited to submit a full application. At this point, the applicant should be able to enhance their prior business plan and personal narrative by tying in specific community information gathered from their visit. Thus, demonstrating their understanding of, commitment to, and specific benefits they will bring to their chosen community.
*Joorney Business Plans Canada is not an immigration consultant, lawyer or advisor and cannot be held responsible for damages incurred from the use of information in this article. If you require more information about a program, please contact a registered immigration professional.
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