The Atlantic Immigration Program offers permanent residence to skilled workers that want to settle in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick

Atlantic Immigration Program

  Table of Contents

OverviewAtlantic Immigration Program: How it Works

Candidate Requirements

Other Ways to Immigrate to Atlantic Canada


The Atlantic Immigration Program is designed to welcome additional newcomers to the Atlantic Canada region to fill the needs of local employers and communities.

The program allows designated local employers to identify, recruit and retain global talent. The program also has the goals of supporting population growth, developing a skilled workforce, and increasing employment rates in the region.

The AIP has proven to be a major success for immigrants, employers, and the Atlantic region. It continues to provide permanent resident status to thousands of immigrants each year, which addresses the needs of local employers, and promotes population, labour force, and economic growth.

Atlantic Immigration Program: How it Works

The Atlantic Immigration Program is an employer-driven program that facilitates the hiring of foreign nationals. All principal applicants arriving in Canada under the program must have a job offer from a designated employer and an individualized settlement plan for themselves and their family.

Once a designated employer finds a candidate who meets their employment needs and the program criteria, that employer will need to first offer them a job. Employers do not need to go through the process of obtaining a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).

Once the candidate has accepted the job, the employer will connect the candidate with a designated settlement service provider organization for a needs assessment and to develop a settlement plan. Employers will also support the long-term integration of the new immigrant and his or her family, if applicable, so they can reach the goals of their settlement plan once they arrive in Canada.

Employers that need to fill a job vacancy quickly will have access to a temporary work permit, so that the candidate and his or her family can come to Canada as soon as possible. In order to obtain this work permit, candidates will need:

a valid job offer;a letter from the province; anda commitment to apply for permanent residence within 90 days of the temporary work permit application.

Employer designation

Employers that would like to hire skilled immigrants under the program must apply to the province(s) in order to receive designation. Employers with locations in multiple provinces will require a separate designation for each province. Employers must meet certain requirements, including a commitment to support the newcomer and his or her family as they integrate into their new life in Atlantic Canada.

Learn more about AIP employer designation.

Candidate Requirements

To be eligible for the AIP you must:

have qualifying work experience unless you are an international student that graduated from a recognized post-secondary institution in Atlantic the educational criteriameet the language criteriashow you have enough settlement funds. You do not need to show proof of settlement funds if you are already living and working in Canada with a valid work permit.

You can start to look for a job with a designated Atlantic Canada employer if you meet all the above criteria.

Work experience

You must have worked at least 1,560 hours in the last 5 years. 

To calculate your hours:

Count hours worked in full-time and part-time jobsOnly count paid hours of work. Do not count volunteer or unpaid hoursDo not count self-employed work hoursYou can count hours worked inside Canada or abroad. You must have been legally authorized to work in Canada as a temporary residentCount hours that were accumulated over a period of time of at least 12 monthsYou can count work experience you gained while you were studying as long as the work hours comply with the conditions of your study permit

The work experience needs to be under a National Occupational Classification (NOC) skill level of 0, A, B, or C.

Your work experience must include the actions in the description of your NOC, and most of the main duties of your NOC.