Immigration pilot program to benefit the Kootenays

A handful of Kootenay towns will participate in BC’s brand new Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) Entrepreneur Immigration Regional Pilot.

Castlegar, Kimberley, Nelson, Rossland and Trail are among more than 30 BC communities to join the pilot, which aims to attract foreign entrepreneurs to establish businesses in rural communities. This will help meet the communities’ economic development needs and encourage investments outside urban areas.

“Due to an aging workforce and a preference for city living, some smaller towns can face challenges growing their local economies,” said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology. “This pilot will attract new businesses that create jobs and spread investment around the province so more British Columbians can benefit from shared prosperity.”

To be part of the pilot, communities must have a population of fewer than 75,000 and have settlement and business supports in place to help newcomers successfully integrate.

Applicants to the BC PNP Entrepreneur Immigration Regional Pilot must be experienced entrepreneurs who will own a business and live in the community. They are required to visit the community and present their business idea to make sure their business plan is consistent with the community’s economic priorities.

To learn more about the BC Provincial Nominee Program, visit