Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP)

The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot is a community-driven program. It’s designed to spread the benefits of economic immigration to smaller communities by creating a path to permanent residence for skilled foreign workers who want to work and live in one of the participating communities.

Participating communities

Community Community website
North Bay, ON
Sudbury, ON
Timmins, ON
Sault Ste. Marie, ON
Thunder Bay, ON
Brandon, MB
Altona/Rhineland, MB
Moose Jaw, SK
Claresholm, AB
Vernon, BC ttps://
West Kootenay (Trail, Castlegar, Rossland, Nelson), BC

This pilot is community-driven, meaning the communities will

  • assess prospective candidates who:
    • best fit the economic needs of these community.
    • have a genuine employment opportunity that meets their community requirements.
    • have the intention of staying in the community.
  • recommend candidates for permanent residence to IRCC for a final decision.
  • connect newcomers with settlement services and mentoring opportunities with established members of the community.


To be eligible for the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot Program, you must meet all IRCC eligibility requirements, as well as the communities’ requirements. The requirements are different in each community, and you need to check their website to see if you are eligible for that community.

No matter which community you apply for, you need the meet the below requirements from the federal government:

  • have 1 year of continuous work experience (at least 1,560 hours) in the past 3 years or have graduated from a publicly funded post-secondary institution in the recommending community:
  • credential from a post-secondary program of 2 years or longer and you
  1. were studying as a full-time student for the full duration of the 2+ years
  2. received the credential no more than 18 months before your application for permanent residence
  3. were in the community for at least 16 of the last 24 months spent studying to get your credential
    • A master’s degree or higher and you
  1. were studying as a full-time student for the duration of your degree
  2. got your degree no more than 18 months before your application for permanent residence
  3. were in the community for the length of your studies
  • meet or exceed the language requirements as below
    • NOC 0 and A: CLB/NCLC 6
    • NOC B: CLB/NCLC 5
    • NOC C and D: CLB/NCLC 4
  • You must have one of the following:
    • a Canadian secondary school (high school) diploma, or
    • a Canadian post-secondary certificate, diploma or degree, or
    • an educational credential assessment (ECA) report, from a designated organization or professional body, showing that you completed a foreign credential that’s equal to a Canadian secondary school (high school) or post-secondary certificate, diploma or degree (your ECA report must be less than 5 years old on the date of your application).
  • prove you have enough money to support your transition into the community
Number of family members
(including those you support who aren’t immigrating with you)
Funds you need
(in Canadian dollars)
1 $8,922
2 $11,107
3 $13,654
4 $16,579
5 $18,803
6 $21,207
7 or more $23,611
  • intend to live in the community.
  • meet community-specific requirements.

If you meet all of the requirements, you can start to look for an eligible job in the community.

To apply for this pilot program, you need to have a job offer in the community. The job you’re offered must meet all of these requirements:

  • 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.
Application Process and Fees

You can be qualified for step 5 if you have applied for permanent residence under the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot, you may also be eligible for a 1-year work permit. The work permit lets you work while your permanent residence application is being processed.

To qualify for a work permit, you must

  • have an eligible offer of employment from your employer.
  • have a recommendation from a participating community.
  • be eligible to apply for a work permit.
  • have received an acknowledgement of receipt letter from us.

This work permit

  • is only for the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot.
  • is valid for 1 year.
  • only lets you work for the employer who offered you the job, in the participating community.