Provincial Nomination Programs Compared, Updated - 2018

Which province would be your match? Under what stream or category could you qualify? When should you submit your application?

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Provincial Nomination Programs Compared, Updated - 2018
Written by Crispin Aranda.
Updated February 11, 2018 | Canada

PNP Programs Compared: Which one is best for you?

If you are an international student pursuing an academic program in Canada or temporarily working for a Canadian employer, you have a better chance of being invited to apply for permanent residency than a counterpart – in the same occupation, age, same academic qualification and work experience – who is outside Canada.

The selection system is Express Entry and to be part of the pool of qualified applicants, you must meet the eligibility requirements for any of the current migration programs and a portion of the provincial nominee program.

Potential candidates express their interest in immigrating to Canada by first completing a profile online that is then pre-assessed to see if they meet criteria of one of the three federal immigration programs discussed below.

Candidates who meet the criteria in any of the program are given a score by the system based on the completed candidate profile.  Information in their profile - which includes age, English proficiency, qualifications, work experience and other factors -  are then ranked against others who also meet these same criteria. Only the candidates with top scores get an invitation to apply for permanent residence.

:  The three programs are:

  • Federal Skilled Worker Program – you may be eligible with 67 points but you will NOT be invited to apply for permanent residency unless you meet the minimum points  and above. Only 2,000 candidates with highest ranking or scores are invited to apply.  In the last two draws the minimum scores are 433 and 436.
  • Federal Skilled Trades Program - have an offer of full-time employment for a total period of at least one year or a certificate of qualification in that skilled trade issued by a Canadian provincial or territorial authority.
  • Canadian Experience Class - To qualify for the CEC through Express Entry, you must have: at least 12 months of full time skilled work experience in Canada, in the last three years (before you apply) and have the required English/language proficiency results.

Points of Entry

Express Entry automatically assigns a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score to candidates who submit and complete a profile. A candidate’s CRS score is divided into two portions: first, the “core” CRS score based on the candidate’s age, education, official language proficiency, work experience (which could earn the candidate up to 600 points) and second, a combination of these human capital attributes.

An additional 600 points is awarded to the candidate if they meet policy or other objectives such as having a provincial nomination, a job offer, has a qualifying relationship with a Canadian permanent resident or citizen or obtained education in Canada above high school.

A candidate could get a maximum CRS score of 1,200 points.  The data provided by a candidate is then verified when the appropriate documents are submitted in support of the criteria being claimed and the points assigned to each criterion.  Failure to submit the appropriate documentation at the application stage  could result in refusal/

Changes in your circumstances could improve your ranking: completing another post-secondary degree, a job offer or nomination by a province for example could add points. On the other hand, waiting another year will reduce points for age. Timing, therefore, is the key.  Other candidates are updating their profile You should, too!

Express Entry: Changes: November 2016 & June 2017

Changes implemented as of Nov 19, 2016




Points awarded for a job offer within NOC major group 00

200 CRS points

600 CRS points

Points awarded for any other skilled job offer

50 CRS points

600 CRS points

Candidates eligible for points for a job offer

LMIA not required for certain workers in Canada

LMIA was required for points to be awarded

Job offer duration requirement

At least one year


1- or 2-year post-secondary education credential in Canada

15 CRS points

No additional points awarded

3-year credential/Master’s/Entry-to-practice professional degree/PhD in Canada

30 CRS points

No additional points awarded

Validity period of Invitation to Apply

90 days

60 days

Changes in effect since June 6, 2017

Having a sibling (who is either a Canadian permanent resident or citizen) and proficiency in two official languages further improves your ranking thus enhancing the chance of being invited to apply.




Points awarded for principal applicant or spouse/common-law partner having a sibling in Canada

15 CRS points

No additional points awarded

French CLB 7 or better + English CLB 4 or below (or no proven English ability)

15 CRS points

No additional points awarded

French CLB 7 or better + English CLB 5 or better

30 CRS points

No additional points awarded

Job Bank registration


Mandatory for candidates without a job offer


Express Entry Profile Needed

Own Nomination program; Points Needed

Streams Offered



AINP - Most streams need job offer.

Employer driven: Skilled Worker (Skilled Workers; int’l Grad & Semi-Skilled Worker) Strategic Recruitment, Self-employed Farmer

British Columbia


BC Express Entry through Skills Immigration Registration System (SIRS).

Skilled Worker; Healthcare Professional; Entry-level and Semi-skilled; International Graduate; Tech Pilot (32 in-demand occupations)


Yes, esp. for MPNP Renewal & MPNP’s Express Entry

MPNP overseas and in-Canada- 60 pts minimum. Manitoba support / connections a plus.

MPNP Renewal: int’l Educ; Business Investor; Skilled worker In Manitoba and SW Overseas. Has Occupations in Demand list.

New Brunswick


Excluded are those with other PR apps.

Yes. Labour Market Stream, 67 pts.

$250 fee

Labour Market Stream – EOI ranking for specified occupations; Entrepreneural;  Skilled Worker with Family w-business / Employer Support (50 pts); Int’l Graduate



 Yes, $250 application fee

Express Entry Skilled Worker; Skilled Worker, Int’l Graduate

Nova Scotia

Yes, part. For Cat. A stream

Yes. Nova Scotia Demand ExpEntry Categories A &  Category B (67 pts)

Entrepreneur; NS Demand ExpEntry with occupations list; NS Experience (1-yr work); Skilled Worker; Int’l Graduate Entrepreneur (by invitation)



OINP: Express Entry ; In Demand Skills w-job offer. $1,500 for Human Capital Stream

ExpEntry for French-speaking; Human Capital Priorities (400 pts at Fed Express Entry pool);  Skilled Trades Streams; Business Category – Corp ($5M) Entrepreneur, $800K-$1.5M); Job Offer for skilled worker & Int’l Student.  

Prince Edward Is.


Yes. 67 points for the Federal Express Entry. No pts. For PEI Nomination categories. Atlantic Immigration Pilot

PEI ExpEntry; Skilled Workers Outside Canada; SW in PEI; Critical Workers; Int’l Graduates all categories pay $300 application fee



Own, separate  immigration program, French proficiency  a must.

Skilled worker and Quebec Experience (student or worker); Investors



Saskatchewan Occupations in Demand; 60 pts; and Saskatchewan Experience, both require $300 fee.

Int’l Skilled Worker (W-Employment offer; Occupation in Demand; SaskExpEntry for Int’l Skilled Worker; Sask Experience; Entrepreneur and Farm Categories.

Northwest Territory


Employer Driven Stream

Details being updated.



Yes, $230 fee for firm’s offer of employment

Skilled Worker; Critical Impact Worker and Business Nominee

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About the Author

Crispin Aranda

Crispin Aranda

Crispin R. Aranda is an established International Visa Conselor and Immigrant Advocate. He is the president of IVC and is in several migration radio programs.

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