3. Skilled Immigration
  4. Other Skilled Immigration
  5. Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP)

Skilled Immigration

Explore Immigration Opportunities for Foreign Skilled Workers

Other Skilled Immigration

Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP)

The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) program is an immigration program that aims to help employers in rural and northern communities fill job vacancies by attracting and retaining foreign workers. 

It is a community-driven pilot program looking to spread the economic benefits of immigration to smaller communities.


What is the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP)?

The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) was launched in 2019. It is a pilot program that creates a pathway to permanent residence for foreign skilled workers who want to work and live in one of the participating communities. 

The RNIP intends to attract experienced foreign workers to fill labour shortages in those small communities, thus allowing local employers to offer full-time job offers.

Since the RNIP is community-driven, the participating communities will assess prospective candidates, to see if they best fit the economic needs of these communities, have a genuine employment opportunity, and have the intention of staying in the community.


RNIP Participating Communities

The following communities entered into an agreement with IRCC in order to benefit their regions with this pilot project.

To meet the economic goals, each community has tailored its own additional eligibility requirements, job search process, and community recommendation application process, which are separated from those set by IRCC. Please consult TWA for community-specific requirements.

Provinces  Communities
Alberta  Claresholm 
British Columbia Vernon 
West Kootenay (Trail, Castlegar, Rossland, Nelson)
Manitoba Altona/Rhineland
Ontario North Bay
Sault Ste. Marie
Thunder Bay
Saskatchewan Moose Jaw

Basically, RNIP applicants must first receive a job offer from an eligible employer in the community. The community will determine whether applicants are qualified for a community recommendation letter, which needs to be submitted to IRCC for permanent residence.


RNIP Eligibility 

To be eligible for the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot program, you must:

  • Have qualifying work experience or have completed your education from a publicly funded post-secondary institution in the recommending community
  • Meet or exceed the language requirements of Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLB) or Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens (NCLC):
    • TEER 0 and 1: CLB/NCLC 6
    • TEER 2 and 3: CLB/NCLC 5
    • TEER 4 and 5: CLB/NCLC 4
  • Meet or exceed the educational requirements of one of the following:
    • a Canadian educational credential, such as a
      • Canadian secondary school (high school) diploma
      • Canadian post-secondary certificate, diploma or degree
    • an educational credential assessment (ECA) report from a designated organization or professional body that
      • is less than 5 years old on the date you apply
      • shows you completed a foreign credential equal to the one above
        • Canadian secondary school (high school) diploma or
        • Canadian post-secondary certificate, diploma or degree
  • Demonstrate that you have sufficient funds to support your transition into the community
  • Intend to live in the community
  • Meet the community-specific requirements
  • Hold temporary resident status (if you are in Canada when you apply)

Once you meet all these requirements, you can begin your research for a suitable job opportunity in the community. 


RNIP Work Experience

In the past 3 years, applicants must have 1 year of work experience (at least 1,560 hours). To determine your total work experience hours, you should:

  • Count the hours you worked in both full-time and part-time positions
    • The hours can be in more than 1 occupation and with different employers
    • The hours must be over a period of at least 12 months
    • The hours worked within or outside Canada, only if you were legally authorized to work in Canada
  • Exclude hours worked without pay, such as volunteer work or unpaid internships
  • Exclude hours worked as a self-employed individual, unless the experience was acquired as a medical practitioner authorized to practice medicine under the laws of the jurisdiction


Job Offer Requirements

To be considered for the program, you must have a genuine job offer in 1 of the participating communities. To secure a job, you must visit the websites of each community and follow their instructions. After obtaining a job offer and fulfilling all the requirements, you can then apply for a community recommendation.

Your job offer must meet all the following requirements:

  • The job must be in the community
    • This means that your location of work must be in the community
  • The employer must continue running their business in the community
  • The job must be full-time
    • This means mean you work at least 30 paid hours per week
  • The job must be non-seasonal
    • In general, this means you have consistent and regularly scheduled paid employment throughout the year
  • Your employment is permanent
    • This means that there is no set end date
  • The wage must meet or exceed the Job Bank’s minimum wage for your job offer’s National Occupational Classification (NOC).
  • Your experience must show that you can perform the duties of the job offered

The job offer you receive cannot be from any of the following sources:

  • A consulate
  • A staffing or employment agency
  • A business that you, your spouse, or common-law partner own or control. This includes any company in which you have a majority stake (more than 50%), whether directly or indirectly. 
  • An employer referenced in paragraphs 200(3)(g.1) and (h) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations, such as:
    • A business that frequently offers services related to striptease, erotic dance, escort services, or erotic massage
    • Providing non-genuine job offers
    • Owing administrative penalties 


Training, Education, Experience and Responsibilities (TEER) Requirements

To qualify for the job offers, your work experience must align with the Training, Education, Experience, and Responsibilities (TEER) category specified in the National Occupational Classification (NOC) as stated below:

  • If the job offer falls under TEER 0 or 1, your work experience must be in TEER 0, 1, 2, or 3.
  • If the job offer falls under TEER 2 or 3, your work experience must be in TEER 1, 2, 3, or 4.
  • If the job offer falls under TEER 4, your work experience must be in TEER 2, 3, or 4.
  • If the job offer falls under TEER 5, your work experience must be in the same 5-digit NOC code.

However, there is a health care exception where, if your work experience is in NOC 31301 (Registered Nurse and Registered Psychiatric Nurses – TEER 1), you can have a job offer in either NOC 33102 (TEER 3): Nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates or NOC 44101 (TEER 4): Home support workers, as per regulations. 


International Students

If you are an international student who meets one of the following criteria, you do not need to have work experience to be eligible for the program:

  1. You have a credential from a post-secondary program of 2 years or longer and 
    1. You were studying as a full-time student for the full duration of the 2+ years
    2. You received the credential no more than 18 months before you apply for permanent residence
    3. You must have spent at least 16 out of the last 24 months studying in the community to get your credential
  2. You have a master’s degree or higher that lasted less than 2 years and
    1. You were studying as a full-time student for the full duration of your degree
    2. You received the degree no more than 18 months before you apply for permanent residence
    3. You must have completed your studies in the community

Please note that you are not eligible for the program as an international student if:

  • More than half of your program was spent studying English or French
  • Distance learning made up more than half of the program
  • You received a scholarship or fellowship that requires you to return to your home country to apply what you learned


Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot: Application Process

To apply for permanent residence under this pilot, there are 4 steps you need to follow:

  1. Make sure that you meet both the IRCC eligibility requirements and the community-specific requirements.
  2. Look for an eligible job with an employer in one of the participating communities.
  3. Once you have a job offer, submit your application for recommendation to the community.
  4. Apply for permanent residence if a community recommends you.