While many entrepreneurs target specific Canadian provinces with their immigration strategies, others focus on specific cities. This approach makes sense, as your choice of city may have a much greater effect on your life than your choice of province. After all, you can expect a very different lifestyle in the urban metropolis of Vancouver compared to rural Cortes Island – even though both locations are in the same province. Aside from Vancouver, two of the most popular choices for business immigration are Toronto and Calgary. Personalize your immigration strategy based on each of these cities, and you can expect positive results.
Business Immigration to Vancouver, British Columbia
Vancouver is one of the most attractive cities for new immigrants. It offers some of the warmest year-round temperatures throughout Canada and plenty of natural splendor. Located on the Pacific coast, Vancouver puts you within touching distance of both the ocean and snowy mountains. Kayak in the summer, snowboard in the winter, and enjoy one of the wealthiest and most modern cities in the nation. You should also know that Vancouver is located within a coastal rainforest – and it receives an infamously high amount of precipitation each year.
In terms of business opportunities, Vancouver is heavily involved with numerous industries. According to the Vancouver Economic Commission, the city’s key industries include clean technology, film, and construction. Because of its location on the Pacific Ocean, Vancouver is also heavily involved with international trade. The Port of Vancouver is one of the most important ports across both North and South America. Other notable industries include video games and agriculture. If you plan to start a business in any of these sectors, you may encounter a range of opportunities in Vancouver.
While most immigration programs revolve around provinces rather than cities, the Vancouver Immigration Partnership (VIP) welcomes immigrants and connects them with various organizations. One of its key goals is to encourage “welcoming and inclusive workplaces.” In terms of provincial programs, the BC Provincial Nominee Program offers an Entrepreneur Immigration option. To qualify, you must have a net worth of $600,000 Canadian dollars, business experience (or post-secondary education), and mastery of French or English. You must also establish a new business upon arrival, buy/improve an existing business, invest $200,00 into this endeavor, and create at least one new full-time job.
Business Immigration to Toronto, Ontario
Toronto has the highest population of any Canadian city, and it is located in the political center of Ontario. Toronto is especially attractive for immigrants due to its welcoming stance, and half of the city’s entire population was born outside of the nation. It is also home to the Toronto Stock Exchange – also known simply as the “TSX.” Most of the nation’s major banks are headquartered in Toronto, highlighting its financial sector. Located just a stone’s throw from Detroit, Toronto is perhaps more linked with the United States than any other Canadian city.
Aside from its financial sector, Toronto is also very active in the technology industry. It is the third most important tech hub in the North American continent after Silicon Valley and New York. Real Estate is another major industry in Toronto, and this sector fuels growth in construction. Aerospace represents a manufacturing focus for Toronto, and the city also manufactures products in a range of other sectors. If your new business involves any of these sectors, Toronto might be a smart choice.
The Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program streamlines business immigration to Toronto. However, the Entrepreneur Stream is no longer accepting applications as of this writing, making it a questionable choice for business immigration to Toronto. Assuming that this program begins accepting applications once again, you can submit an expression of interest. Note that if you apply to start a business in Toronto, you must apply with a net worth of $800,000. This is double the requirement for all other regions.
Business Immigration to Calgary, Alberta
Calgary is the most important city in Alberta, and it is highly involved in the energy sector. Located in the prairie region, the area is surrounded by foothills and meadows. The Canadian Rocky Mountains are close by, and you can expect long winters and short summers in this location.
Although Calgary is involved in financial services, tourism, and manufacturing industries, the energy sector represents its core focus. While the Alberta tar sands have been driving the province’s economy for decades, Calgary also focuses on clean energy to some degree. You should know that numerous startups are headquartered in Calgary. The city also has the highest GDP per capita across all Canadian cities, beating both Toronto and Vancouver by considerable margins. Clearly, there is a lot of economic activity going on in this city.
The Alberta Advantage Immigration Program represents the most obvious choice for business immigration to Calgary. There are four entrepreneur streams, although two involve farms and rural areas, which may not be suitable for those planning to settle in Calgary. The remaining two options include the Foreign Graduate Entrepreneur Stream and the Graduate Entrepreneur Stream. If you have graduated from a post-secondary institution in Alberta and you wish to start a business, you can opt for the Foreign Graduate Entrepreneur Stream. If you have graduated from a foreign post-secondary institution and you wish to start a new business in Alberta, you can choose the Foreign Graduate Entrepreneur Stream.
Find a Qualified Business Immigration Lawyer in Canada
Whether you wish to emigrate to Vancouver, Toronto, or Calgary, you can create effective strategies alongside a qualified immigration lawyer in Canada. Choose a lawyer who has specific experience with business immigration to explore and target a range of opportunities in each of these three Canadian cities. Work with Ackah Law to discuss these opportunities in more detail and get started with an effective business immigration plan. Book your consultation today and take your first steps toward a new home and a new business in Vancouver, Toronto, or Calgary.