Invest in Alberta

One of the ways to immigrate to the province of Alberta, Canada, is the method of investment and entrepreneurship. The Alberta Advantage Immigration Program (AAIP) has 4 entrepreneurial subgroups  , each of which is designed with a specific purpose for immigrants and entrepreneurs.

 In the following, we introduce these 4 Alberta entrepreneurship programs:

  • Alberta Graduate Entrepreneur Stream
  • Entrepreneurship program of foreign graduates Foreign Graduate Entrepreneur Stream
  • Farm Stream Entrepreneurship Program
  • Entrepreneurship program in rural areas Rural Entrepreneur Stream

Alberta’s entrepreneurship programs (except for the Farming Program) are based on a points system, and applicants who score higher when submitting an Express of Interest (EOI) are allowed to submit their final application to the province’s entrepreneurship program. . These programs allow qualified applicants to obtain Canadian permanent residency.

Alberta is a green province full of natural beauty and various resources. Alberta is located in western Canada and includes the two cities of Calgary and Edmonton, one of the largest cities in Canada.

 

Advantages of investing in Alberta

  • Alberta’s economic and banking system is stable.
  • Business policies in Alberta are favorable and supportive of investors.
  • Alberta’s low tax rate, less red tape and access to a talented workforce make investing in the province more favorable.
  • Alberta is internationally connected and export oriented.
  • The cost of living in Alberta is affordable.
  • It is possible to obtain permanent residence in Canada for investors and their spouses and children under the age of 22.

 

Alberta investment programs

Alberta Graduate Entrepreneurship Program

The Alberta Graduate Entrepreneurship Program is designed for international students who have graduated from one of Alberta’s prestigious universities and intend to establish or launch a business in the province. Applicants for this work must have a valid work permit and after completing the necessary conditions and procedures, they can apply for permanent residence in Canada.

Alberta Graduate Entrepreneurship is based on a scoring system and applicants are scored based on factors such as age, education, language level, work history, as well as adaptability factors. Some scoring factors are mandatory and some are optional.

 

To immigrate to Alberta, Canada through the Graduate Entrepreneur Stream program, the following conditions are required:

  • Education:  At least two years of full-time study at an Alberta post-secondary institution with a degree or diploma.
  • Work Permit:  You must have a valid Post Study Work Permit (PGWP) at the time of submitting your Expression of Interest (EOI).
  • Language skill:  CLB score of 7 in English or French or its equivalent in all four language skills of speaking, writing, listening and reading is required.
    For English, IELTS and Selpip tests are acceptable.
    For French, TEF and TCF tests are acceptable.
  • Establishing a business:  You must start a new business or purchase an existing business in Alberta so that you own 34% of it. If you have business partners, your partners must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents.

 

Entrepreneurship program for foreign graduates

This program is for entrepreneurs who have graduated from universities outside of Canada and intend to establish startup and innovative businesses in Alberta.

To apply for this program, you must work with one of the designated agencies, Empowered Startups or Platform Calgary. If these agencies approve your business plan and other basic requirements for the program, they will issue a letter of recommendation that you must submit with your EOI application.

 

 
  • Having at least 6 months of full-time work experience in business management and/or ownership
  • Presenting a business plan with projected financial costs
  • Having a university degree received within the last 10 years.
  • Providing a 10-minute presentation of the details of the desired business
  • Language score at least 5 CLB level in English or French
  • If the business is located in urban centers, it is necessary to have at least 34% of the business ownership and if the business is located outside Calgary and Edmonton, it is necessary to have at least 51% of the business ownership.
  • $100,000 for investing in urban areas and $50,000 for investing in non-urban areas
  • Have letters of recommendation from Alberta approved agencies
  • Having enough money to start a business and support a family in Alberta

 

Farm entrepreneurship program

The Alberta Farming Program is designed to attract entrepreneurs who wish to immigrate to Alberta and establish or purchase a farm. 

For this program, you must first submit your business plan to the province of Alberta. If its implementation is feasible and meets the agricultural needs of the province of Alberta, it will be approved. After the business plan is approved, you will need to submit the required application documents to both the province of Alberta and Immigration Canada.

 
  • Having skills and work experience in the field of farm management
  • Minimum investment amount: $500,000 and minimum net worth: $500,000
  • Determining the investment plans as documented in the business plan

 

Entrepreneurship program in rural areas

This program is for applicants who plan to establish or purchase a business in Alberta’s rural communities. 

In order to apply for this program, you must first be in contact with one of Alberta’s communities (population below 100,000 people) and have an exploratory trip to that area. 

After the exploratory trip, you should present your business plan to the desired community and explain about the business and the benefits it aims for the community. If approved, the desired community will provide you with a letter of support, which you must submit to AAIP along with your EOI application.

 
  • Having at least 3 years of work experience as an active business owner/manager or at least 4 years of work experience as a senior manager within the last 10 years
  • At least a diploma
  • Having a score at CLB level 4 in English or French
  • Having a net worth of $300,000
  • Offering an investment amount of $200,000
  • Have a letter of support from a rural Alberta community

 

Action steps for the Alberta Investment Program

In order to obtain an Alberta entrepreneur visa and finally obtain a permanent residence in Canada, you must go through the following steps:

Step 1: Submit your EOI application to Alberta Immigration

If you meet the program requirements,  submit an Expression of Interest or EOI on the AAIP portal for the Alberta Immigration Program. AAIP will review your application and calculate your score within 30 days. 

If you get the necessary points, you will enter the lottery pool. Applicants with the highest scores are then selected in a lottery and asked to submit their business application online to AAIP.

Step 2: Submit your business application to Alberta Immigration

After you win the lottery, you have 90 days to submit your business application online to AAIP. At this stage, it is necessary to collect all the required documents for each entrepreneurial program you have applied for and upload them along with the necessary forms in your application.

Step 3: Canadian Immigration evaluates your application

After you submit your application to AAIP, its evaluation begins. If your application is approved, AAIP will require you to sign a Performance Agreement or Implementation Agreement with the Province of Alberta. In this agreement, the obligations necessary for the program are written, and by signing it, you undertake to implement all its rules.

In the entrepreneurship program of foreign graduates and the entrepreneurship program of rural areas , after signing the agreement, you will receive a letter of support from the province, and then you can apply for a two-year work visa to the Canadian Federal Immigration Service. You have 12 months from the time your application is approved to enter Canada.

The Alberta Graduate Entrepreneurship Program does not have a work visa process  , as the applicant is already a resident of Alberta and has a post-graduation work visa. After the application is approved by AAIP, the applicant can start his business and manage it according to the rules of the agreement.

The farm entrepreneurship program  does not have a work permit process, and after the business application is approved by AAIP, you will receive a provincial nomination directly, and with that you can apply for permanent residence in Canada.

Step 4: Start your business in Alberta

After entering the province of Alberta, you are required to set up your business and fulfill the obligations you have signed in the performance agreement with the province. You must also show that your business produces products or provides services and in this The path is successful.

It is necessary to start and actively manage your business for at least 12 months.

Step 5: Get a provincial nomination

During the time you operate and manage your business in Alberta, you must submit a performance report to the AAIP every few months. Also, after one year of starting your business, send your final performance report to AAIP to receive provincial nomination.

If your executive performance is approved and you fulfill the obligations of the agreement, you will be selected by the province and receive a provincial nomination certificate. This certificate is your permission to apply for permanent residence in Canada.

Step 6: Submit a permanent residence request

After you receive a Certificate of Provincial Selection from the province, you can apply for Canadian residency by investment in Alberta. At this stage, you may need to undergo medical tests. 

Prepare all the necessary documents and send them to the Canadian Federal Immigration Service.

 

The cost of an investment visa in Alberta

Application review fee for Alberta Entrepreneurship Programs

Alberta entrepreneurship files are reviewed at the province’s immigration office, and the costs are as follows:

Entrepreneurship program Cost (CAD)
Alberta Graduate Entrepreneurship Program $3,500
Entrepreneurship program for foreign graduates $3,500
Entrepreneurship program in rural areas $3,500
Farming program 500 dollars

 

The cost of processing a work visa application in Alberta’s entrepreneurial programs

As we mentioned before, two entrepreneurship programs of the province of Alberta, including the “Foreign Graduate Entrepreneurship Program” and the “Rural Entrepreneurship Program” require a work permit or temporary work visa. The application for a work visa is reviewed at the Canadian Federal Immigration Office and its costs are as follows:

type of application Cost (CAD)
Work permit per person $155
Fingerprinting per person $85
Family fingerprinting (two or more people) $170

 

What is the timeline for Alberta Entrepreneurship and Investment Programs?

 It usually takes 4-6 months to review applications for Alberta Entrepreneurship Programs  . The work permit review process may take 3 to 6 months.

In general, the processing time for Alberta Immigration and Canadian Federal Immigration depends on various factors, such as the country you are applying from, the conditions of the embassy, ​​the completeness of the application, etc.