On 13th January 2022, Alberta’s immigration minister announced that the province would be launching the Accelerated Tech Pathway to attract more technology professionals. Tyler Shandro, the immigration minister, announced that the new immigration pathway was going to help technology professionals from abroad and within Canada get permanent residence quickly.
As long as the candidates have a job offer in a tech industry occupation that is in demand, the whole process can take as little as 6 months. This is significantly shorter than the Express Entry system’s processing time which averaged 9 months in 2021.
Apart from this, the Accelerated Tech Pathway will ensure that tech professionals who need a work permit get a letter of support from the government of Alberta. The new immigration pathway will fall under the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Programme (AINP).
According to a study by the Alberta Enterprise Corporation (AEC), the number of tech companies in the province has grown from 1,238 in 2018 to over 3000 now. Moreover, the percentage of these companies that have more than 25 employees increased from 13% in 2018 to 25% in 2020.
But this growth has come with its problems, particularly around sourcing talent for sales and technical roles. With the launch of the Accelerated Tech Pathway, the province will finally be able to meet its tech talent demand.
To be selected for the Accelerated Tech Pathway, you have to first be eligible for the Alberta Express Entry Stream. As such, you have to go through the following steps:
This is the first thing you need to do to be eligible for the Accelerated Tech Pathway. To do this, you have to be eligible for the Federal Skilled Worker Program, Federal Skilled Trades Program, or Canadian Experience Class.
Once you have an Express Entry system profile, you’ll need to fill an online form applying to the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP). Among other things, the form will ask for details about your tech job in Alberta and your Express Entry system profile.
Ultimately, to be eligible for the tech pathway you’ll have to be working or have a job offer in an eligible occupation from an Alberta-based company. Here is a list of the eligible occupations together with their National Occupational Classification (NOC) codes:
When the AINP receives your application, they will check whether you are eligible for the Alberta Express Entry stream. If you are, they will send you an email inviting you to apply for provincial nomination. Without this specific invite, you can’t apply for the Accelerated Tech Pathway.
Once you get an email invitation, it is time for you to apply. Ensure all the data you input is accurate – fraud or misrepresentation can get you banned from reapplying for 5 years. If you succeed in getting a nomination, you’ll have 30 days to accept it via your Express Entry profile.
This will automatically earn you 600 additional Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points, significantly increasing your score. While this doesn’t guarantee you permanent residence, it usually does push you to the top of the Express Entry pool. All you have to do then is wait for an invitation to apply from Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).