BC PNP: STRATEGIC OCCUPATIONS: Entry-Level and Semi-Skilled

Who Can Apply

The Entry Level and Semi-Skilled category applies to qualifying foreign workers in select occupations and eligible employers in the tourism/hospitality, food processing and long-haul trucking industries. In order to apply under this category nominee applicants must have worked for their employer in BC full-time in an eligible occupation for a period of at least nine consecutive months immediately prior to the date their BC PNP application was submitted. Nominee applicants must also maintain continuous full-time employment with the BC employer throughout the application process. Work experience that forms an integral part of a program of study (co-op) or is obtained using an Off-Campus Work Permit does not qualify toward this nine month work experience requirement.

The tourism/hospitality, food processing and long-haul trucking industries were selected for this category as they play a key role in BC’s export-oriented economy, and are experiencing acute and persistent labour shortages. Through their respective provincial industry organizations, these industries have implemented human resource development strategies to hire, train and retain domestic workers, and have demonstrated that they will be unable to fully meet their on-going workforce requirements without the opportunity to retain foreign workers through permanent immigration.



The requirements considered for your application under the Entry Level and Semi-Skilled category are:



Applications under the Entry Level and Semi-Skilled category will be considered only for select occupations in the tourism/hospitality, food processing and long-haul trucking industries. The lists of occupations for each of these sectors are available on the following pages:

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If the nominee applicant was originally hired under a Labour Market Opinion, the regular wage the nominee applicant is presently earning must be equal to or greater than that specified in the employment contract.

The regular wage the employer pays the nominee applicant must be a rate comparable to that for equivalent jobs in BC for workers with a similar level of experience and training.

Bonuses, commissions, profit-sharing distributions, tips and gratuities, and overtime wages paid to the employee are NOT considered part of the regular wage.

The BC PNP uses information from published and unpublished surveys, industry and professional associations and Service Canada/HRSDC to compare wages. Geographic location, skill and experience levels may be used to calculate wage rates. One tool for determining wage rates is the Working in Canada website administered by the Government of Canada.


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Education and Licensing

Nominee applicants must demonstrate that they have completed a minimum of 12 years of formal education either within or outside of Canada. This can be demonstrated by submitting copies any of the following in English: diplomas, certificates, degrees, transcripts.

A nominee applicant applying as a Long-Haul Truck Driver must hold a valid BC Class 1 driver’s license with air brake endorsement and any other certification required for the position (e.g., for transporting dangerous goods). A copy of the license must be submitted with the application.

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Offer of Employment

Employers must provide a written offer of indeterminate, full-time employment printed on company letterhead and addressed to the nominee applicant. Indeterminate employment has no pre-determined end date. Full-time employment means that the employee is expected to work year-round and, on average, at least 30 hours per week.

The offer must be signed and dated by a person authorized to hire employees, and also signed by the nominee applicant to indicate their acceptance of the position.

The offer must state:

  • Job title, description of duties, and the indeterminate, full-time nature of the position
  • Rate of pay
  • Employee’s standard hours of work
  • Any employee benefits that exceed statutory minimums, such as pension and medical plans, disability insurance, sick pay, accommodation and meal allowances, and extra paid vacations

In addition:

  • The employer will make no deductions from the employee’s pay, or require any other payment for recruitment or retention, including fees related to immigration.
  • If the position is covered by a collective agreement, that agreement should be referenced.

The employer and the nominee applicant must be establishing an employer-employee relationship; applications will not be approved for individuals hired under a contract for service or independent contractor agreement. The employer may offer the nominee applicant a more senior position than that indicated on the work permit, provided that the nominee applicant is qualified for the job and will be paid a comparable market wage in BC.


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Language Proficiency

Being able to communicate and work in English is a key to becoming economically established in British Columbia. To be eligible in the ELSS category, nominee applicants must have basic proficiency in English.

If the Labour Market Opinion or PNP Guaranteed Job Offer Form indicates that no English language proficiency is needed for the job, the employer will pay for the nominee applicant to take one of the following approved English language tests: TOEFL, IELTS and CELPIP. If the applicant fails to demonstrate basic proficiency, the employer will pay for the applicant to enroll in a recognized English as a second language program (ESL) for a minimum of 6 months.

NOTE: Beginning in June 2012, the BC PNP will implement a mandatory language test requirement for all nominee applicants employed in lower-skilled occupations (National Occupation Classification Level C and D).

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Eligible Employer

Employers must meet certain requirements to be considered eligible under the BC PNP. As the Strategic Occupations component of the BC PNP is a joint application process, the application will be refused if the employer does not meet the requirements.


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Ability to Become Economically Established in BC

The potential for nominee applicants to become economically established in BC will be assessed according to their family income and number of dependents.


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Refugees & Removal Orders

The Provincial Nominee Program will not nominate an individual who has an unresolved refugee claim in Canada, who is in Canada illegally, who is under a removal order in Canada, or who is prohibited from entering Canada.