Table of contents

COVID-19 response

The AINP continues to accept and process applications and Expressions of Interest (EOIs), with temporary adjustments to some application and assessment processes.

Find out how the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program is responding to COVID-19.

Before you apply

You may only have one Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP) application in process at any time.

How to withdraw an application in process

If you decide to request the withdrawal of an application, email your request with your AINP file number to [email protected]

The AINP must confirm that your application has been withdrawn before a new application can be submitted in the AINP portal. The AINP will send you an email advising when your application has been withdrawn.

If an application is withdrawn, the application fee will not be refunded.

Application steps

There are 7 steps in the Foreign Graduate Start-up Visa Stream application process.

Step 1. Read the terms and conditions

AINP terms and conditions

The availability of AINP streams and categories is dependent upon application volume needs. The AINP reserves the right to close application intake for any AINP stream or category at any time, without prior notice. Further, the AINP may decline to consider applications to closed or suspended streams or categories, regardless of when the applications were submitted. The criteria for the AINP are routinely evaluated and may be subject to change at any time and without notice. Changes to the AINP, including notice of suspension or closure of its streams and categories and criteria changes, are available at AINP – Updates.

The AINP is not obligated to assess or process any applications submitted. Applications to the AINP are treated as an expression of interest, and as such, will be processed according to quality of the application (completeness and eligibility), occupational supply and demand forecasting, AINP application volumes, and/or any other factors at the AINP’s discretion. By applying to the AINP, you acknowledge and agree that your application may not be processed in the order received, or at all. Further, the decision to assess/process any particular application, and the outcome of any such assessment/processing, is at the AINP’s sole discretion.

Program criteria are eligibility minimums, and meeting program criteria does not guarantee that a candidate’s application will be assessed, processed, or granted. The AINP may choose to assess applications with the most current criteria irrespective of the date of submission of an application.

Candidates must have a strong likelihood of becoming economically established in Alberta and the AINP reserves the right to decline applications if the AINP is of the opinion that the candidate may not economically establish in Alberta.

Step 2. Review the eligibility criteria

Review the Foreign Graduate Start-Up Visa Stream (FGSVS) eligibility criteria and the AINP Terms and Conditions (Step 1 above) before submitting an Expression of Interest.

The AINP does not guarantee that all complete Business Applications received will be assessed, or that all candidates who meet the eligibility criteria will be issued a nomination. Review the AINP Terms and Conditions for complete information (see Step 1 above).

Submission of a Business Application or nomination by the AINP does not guarantee you will be issued a permanent resident visa.

Step 3. Submit an Expression of Interest

If you meet FGSVS criteria, you can submit your Expression of Interest (EOI) by accessing the AINP Portal. The AINP will review and score your EOI within 30 days of submission. Highest-ranking candidates will be invited to submit a Business Application.

For more information on the criteria used to assess EOIs, see the FGSVS Eligibility page.

The FGSVS Business Application form is not available online. Only candidates who receive an invitation to submit a Business Application will be able to access the AINP Portal to start the Business Application process.

Using the AINP online portal

The AINP uses an online system to submit EOI and Business Applications. You will need:

  • valid email address
  • access to a computer
  • ability to scan and upload the required documents to the AINP portal

AINP online portal

Before entering your application information in the portal, read AINP Portal Helpful Hints (PDF, 101 KB) for tips on filling out the online application.

The AINP portal is for candidates only. You are responsible for your AINP online portal account. Portal access is not available for third-party representatives and family members.

You must have a basic MyAlberta Digital ID (MADI) account to access the portal. A MADI account is a free online identity for accessing Government of Alberta services online. Instructions on how to create a MADI account are in the portal and on the MADI website. You may also use an existing basic or verified MADI account.

The email address used to set up your MADI account is the email address that the AINP will use to correspond with you. If you need to change your email address for corresponding with the AINP, you must update your MADI account.

You should not share your MADI account with others, including family members and third-party representatives, as your information or documents could be modified without your knowledge or consent.

You are responsible for the information provided to the AINP for your application. Incorrect or fraudulent information could result in your application being declined, and you could be banned from applying to the AINP for a period of time.

Submitting an EOI

Foreign graduates can submit an EOI for the FGSVS through the AINP Portal. See the AINP Business Plan (Guidelines) (PDF, 633 KB) for what to include in your business plan when submitting your EOI to the AINP.

Once you start your EOI in the AINP Portal, you will have 120 days to complete and submit the required documents. After 120 days, your EOI will be purged. You can submit a new EOI if you choose.

You must ensure your EOI is up to date at the time of submission, and that all your information is complete, true and correct.

There is no fee for submitting an EOI.

Once your EOI is complete, you can submit it to the AINP by clicking the 'Submit' button in the AINP Portal. You must ensure that your EOI’s status is 'Submitted' or it will not be reviewed by the AINP.

Note: once your EOI is submitted, you will not be able to update it until the AINP has reviewed and scored it, and the status is 'Eligible'. If your EOI status is 'Not Eligible' then you will not be able to update it and must submit a new EOI if you choose. The AINP will score your EOI within 30 days of submission.

EOI pool

EOIs are placed in the pool of qualified candidates for a period of 12 months from the date of their original submission. If your EOI is not selected in this 12-month period, it will be cancelled and you will have to submit a new EOI if you choose.

While your EOI is in the pool of qualified candidates, you can update or cancel your submission by accessing the AINP Portal. By updating or cancelling your submission, you will no longer be in the pool of qualified candidates. If you choose to resubmit, your new EOI will have a new submission date and it will be assessed against the program criteria at that time.

Candidate’s information will be assessed based on an FGSVS Points Grid. Candidates with the highest-ranking points will be contacted directly by the AINP and invited to submit a Business Application. Only candidates who are asked to submit a Business Application to the FGSVS will be considered.

An EOI is not an application. There is no guarantee that if you meet the selection requirements you will receive a letter of invitation or be asked to submit a Business Application. Invitations to submit Business Application are affected by the volume of potential candidates meeting these requirements, the type (occupation or sector) of submissions in AINP processing queues, and the number of available nominations.

Required documents

Your EOI will include the following documents or forms:

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4. Submit the Business Application package

If you receive a request to submit a Business Application, you can submit your Business Application online using the AINP Portal. A draft of the Business Application will be created in the AINP portal with the information you provided during your EOI. Make sure you update this information and upload all the required forms and supporting documents in the AINP Portal and pay the $3,500 non-refundable fee.

A complete Business Application includes all of the required documents listed on the FGSVS Business Application Document Checklist (PDF, 239 KB). If any documents are missing, your application may be declined. A complete Business Application must be submitted within 90 days of receiving the email from the AINP requesting you to submit a Business Application.

AINP approved designated agency and Qualified Service Provider (QSP)

The following reports must be submitted with your Business Application:

  1. Business Plan Evaluation Report
  2. Qualified Service Provider Report – if requested by the AINP

Business plan evaluation report

Your business plan must be evaluated through a business plan evaluation report completed by an AINP approved designated agency.

QSP Report

You may be required to have your net worth and business investment assessed by the QSP. Refer to your request to submit Business Application email, to determine if the AINP requires you to have your net worth and business investment assessed by the QSP.

Contact the QSP for a Qualified Service Provider Report as soon as your receive the request to submit a Business Application from the AINP. The AINP will only accept a Qualified Service Provider Report from one of the following QSPs:

KPMG LLP
3100 - 2005 5 Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta
T2P 4B9
Phone: 403-691-8000
Fax: 403-691-8008
Website: www.kpmg.ca
Email: [email protected]

Grant Thornton LLP
1701 Scotia Place 2, 10060 Jasper Avenue NW
Edmonton, Alberta
T5J 3R8
Phone: 780-422-7114
Fax: 780-426-3208
Website: www.grantthornton.ca
Email: [email protected]

Only candidates who receive a request to submit a Business Application will be able to access the AINP Portal to start Business Application process. A request to submit a Business Application will be sent by email. After logging into the AINP portal, click on ‘Check Existing Applications'. A draft Business Application is automatically created for you. Review and update the Business Application and provide all additional required documents. Your Business Application must be current and complete.

If you do not submit your Business Application within the specified deadline, your draft will be cancelled in the AINP portal. If you are still interested in applying to the AINP, you will have to submit a new EOI under the relevant criteria in place at the time of submission. EOIs that are cancelled due to failure to submit a Business Application by the deadline are not eligible for a Request for Reconsideration.

The AINP will not accept changes to an EOI submitted after the request to submit a Business Application has been sent. You may only submit a Business Application if you can demonstrate you meet criteria. You will be assessed against the criteria in place at the time your Business Application is received.

When the AINP selects candidates, it expects that information contained in the AINP Portal is accurate. The information and documents you identified in the AINP Portal must be provided to the AINP at the time your Business Application is submitted. Documents and information provided in the Business Application must support the information provided in your EOI in the AINP Portal. If there are discrepancies between the information provided in the EOI and the Business Application, your submission may be declined.

Application fee

Fee conditions

A $3,500 non-refundable fee applies to all online Business Applications.

The Business Application fee is non-refundable once a Business Application has been submitted to the AINP. The Business Application fee covers the cost of processing your Business Application and is required whether your Business Application is approved or not. There is no guarantee you will be issued a nomination certificate.

Note: refund requests for Business Application fees will not be considered. Each Business Application requires a separate Business Application fee and the fee will not be refunded.

Paying the Business Application fee

Instructions on how to pay your fee are available in the AINP portal. For any online fee payment issues, contact the Service Alberta Contact Centre at:

Phone: 1-844-643-2788
Email: [email protected]

You will need to pay your fee within 24 hours of submitting your Business Application in the AINP portal.

The $3,500 fee must be paid online using a single credit or debit card.

If you do not pay your fee within 24 hours of submitting your Business Application, your Business Application will be cancelled. Cancelled Business Applications cannot be reinstated. Your Business Application is linked to your EOI. If the Business Application is cancelled, you must submit a new EOI for consideration and selection.

Confirmation of Business Application receipt and payment

Check the status of your Business Application on the MyApplications page of the AINP portal to confirm your Business Application fee has been paid:

  • Your Business Application has not been accepted for processing by the AINP and your fee has not been paid if the ‘Pay Fees’ button shows in the portal and the status of your Business Application is ‘Payment Pending’ on the MyApplications page.
  • Your Business Application has been accepted for processing by the AINP if the ‘Pay Fees’ button is not showing in the portal and the status of your Business Application on the MyApplications page in the portal is ‘Submitted’. You will also get an email from eServices with your fee payment receipt.

After you apply

Notification of Business Application

Emails from the AINP will always come from a Government of Alberta account (@gov.ab.ca). The Alberta government does not use email accounts such as Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc. If you receive a suspicious email, contact your local police and report the incident to the Immigrate to Alberta Information Service at:

Toll free: 1-877-427-6419
Email: [email protected]

Once you submit a complete Business Application, the AINP Portal will automatically generate a file number. If any documents are missing, your Business Application will be declined.

Update your information

Keep your Business Application information up to date while you wait for it to be assessed.

If you need to make changes or updates to your Business Application after submission, but before an AINP Program Officer contacts you, you must email a Business Application change request to [email protected] advising of the change that is required.

You must update the AINP if you wish to:

  • correct or update information or documents in your Business Application
  • provide required updates on your contact information – address, email address or phone number – or changes to your family status
  • provide updated or renewed work permits
  • update your use of a representative
  • request your Business Application be withdrawn

For requests to change information or update documents in your Business Application, send an email with your AINP file number advising of the change that is needed, and attach any relevant documents.

Forms to notify the AINP of updates:

The AINP does not provide confirmation when it receives additional information.

You will receive an automated email response indicating your email is received. You must keep track of the requests you send to the AINP. The AINP will update its internal system with changes, but changes to your online Business Application will not be reflected in the portal.

If more information is needed

An AINP Program Officer will contact you by email or phone if they require more information to assess your Business Application. You must submit this information in the format requested by the Program Officer to their government email address. The only other information you should send to your assigned Program Officer are documents showing changes to your contact information, employment, work permit status or family situation.

Step 5. Business Application assessment

Once the Business Application and supporting documents are received, the AINP will assess your Business Application. There is no guarantee that all complete Business Applications will be assessed or that all candidates who meet the criteria will be issued a nomination.

An AINP officer will contact you by email or phone if additional information is needed to assess your Business Application and will tell you how to send the information.

Your Business Application will be assessed against the eligibility criteria and your EOI points will be verified. Find more information on the criteria used to assess EOIs and Business Applications.

The AINP may contact you for more information. If you do not respond to requests for additional information, your Business Application will be declined.

If the AINP determines that you meet program criteria, you will be contacted by the AINP for an in-person or web-based video conferencing interview. During the interview, you must be able to present your comprehensive business plan, and demonstrate how your business plan meets the FGSVS requirements.

If your Business Application is approved

If the AINP deems that you have demonstrated that you meet all FGSVS criteria, you will be sent a Business Performance Agreement (BPA) by email for your review and signature.

Your BPA is a legal agreement between you and the Province of Alberta. Your BPA will include:

  • the industry sector that your business will operate within
  • the term length of the agreement
  • a list of other information relevant to your Business Application, including but not limited to:
    • job creation
    • business succession
    • business location

The BPA requirements are based upon the information you provided in your Business Application and business plan.

You must sign, scan, and email your BPA to the AINP within 14 days.

Note: the AINP will not consider any requests to change the terms of the BPA after it is approved and signed by you.

Once all parties have signed the BPA, the AINP will provide you with a copy of the signed agreement, a Business Application Approval Letter, and a 205(a) Letter of Support. The 205(a) Letter of Support allows you to apply for a 2-year work permit to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). There is no cost associated with this 205(a) Letter of support. Any subsequent 205(a) request will require a $100 processing fee.

After receiving the work permit, you can move to Alberta to establish your business. Review the information on:

The Business Application Approval Letter is not a nomination and cannot be used to apply for permanent residence. The approval letter recognizes that the AINP approves your Business Application and proposed business outlined in the BPA and expects that you will reside and operate your business in Alberta. The 205(a) Letter of Support will allow you to apply for a work permit to come to Alberta to establish your business.

If your Business Application is declined

If your Business Application is declined, you will be emailed a letter outlining reasons for decision. If you used an immigration representative, the email will be copied to your representative.

If you can demonstrate an error was made in assessing your file, you may be eligible to appeal the decision by submitting a Request for Reconsideration (see below).

Step 6. Establish your business in Alberta

Upon receiving your Business Application Approval Letter and your work permit, you must:

  • reside in Alberta
  • actively own and operate an eligible business in Alberta with at least 34% ownership in an urban centre or 51% ownership in a regional area for at least 12 months
  • meet the conditions of the BPA you signed with the Government of Alberta
  • demonstrate that the business is operating successfully by generating product or services after one year of operation

Once the conditions of the BPA have been met, submit the Final Report for AINP Nomination. See Step 7 below.

Candidates must:

  1. Submit an arrival report to the AINP within 30 days of the date that appears as the 'date signed' on your work permit issued by the Government of Canada.
  2. Submit a business progress report to the AINP after the end of each 6-month period from the date that appears as the 'date signed' on your work permit issued by the Government of Canada. If you require more time to meet the conditions of your BPA and want to extend your BPA term length, you must send an email to the AINP at [email protected] to request an extension.
    • The AINP must receive your request for a BPA extension at least 90 days before your current BPA term expires. The AINP may request evidence to confirm you are meeting the conditions of your signed BPA. There is no guarantee that your BPA term will be extended.

Note: a template for the arrival report and business progress report will be posted at a later date.

Extending your work permit

If you need to extend your work permit to meet the conditions of the BPA, you must submit a request for a 205(a) Letter of Support to the AINP within 90 days of your work permit expiry. All requests for a 205(a) Letter of Support will be reviewed and granted on a case-by-case basis. Requests for a 205(a) letter of Support are subject to a processing fee of $100.

There is no guarantee that the AINP will extend your BPA term length or will issue you a 205(a) Letter of Support to extend your work permit. In addition, the issuance of the 205(a) Letter of Support by the AINP does not guarantee that IRCC will extend your work permit.

Step 7. Final Report for AINP Nomination

Once candidates satisfy the conditions of the BPA, they can apply to be nominated by the AINP for permanent residency. Candidates must submit a Final Report for AINP Nomination along with the supporting documents.

The AINP will assess your Final Report for AINP Nomination and will inform you of the decision. You will be assessed based upon your compliance with your BPA and any other criteria in place at the time you started your application process.

Note: the Final Report for AINP Nomination template will be available at a later date.

If your final report is approved

If your Final Report for AINP Nomination is approved, the AINP will:

  • notify Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) of your nomination
  • send a nomination letter to you explaining how to submit your permanent residency application to the IRCC Centralized Intake Office (CIO). You must apply for permanent residence to IRCC.

You must continue to meet the conditions of your BPA during the AINP nomination assessment. If you no longer meet the conditions of your BPA, you will not be issued a nomination certificate and you will be declined.

You may use your nomination to renew your work permit.

A one-time nomination extension may be issued under the FGSVS stream if all nomination extension requirements are met. Request for a nomination extension is subject to a processing fee of $100.

IRCC will contact you for further clarification or additional documents for your Application for Permanent Residence. If IRCC approves your application, you and your dependents will receive a Canadian permanent resident visa from IRCC.

If your final report is declined

If your Final Report for AINP Nomination is declined, you will be emailed a decision letter providing the reasons your nomination was declined. If you used an immigration representative, the email will be copied to your representative.

If you can demonstrate an error was made in assessing your file, you may be eligible to appeal the decision by submitting a request for reconsideration, see below.

Request for reconsideration

All requests for reconsideration are subject to a service fee of $100. Information on how to pay the fee is provided below.

You may only submit one request for reconsideration per application.

Requests will not be processed until full payment is received.

Eligibility for reconsideration

You may submit a request for reconsideration on the decision of your AINP Business Application or Final Report for AINP Nomination if you meet the following criteria.

A request for reconsideration must:

  • be directly related to the reasons stated in the decision letter
  • demonstrate that an error was made in applying program criteria to the Business Application or Final Report for AINP Nomination
  • be submitted by:
    • the candidate named on the decision letter, or
    • a representative of the candidate
  • be submitted within 30 calendar days of the date the decision letter was issued

A request for reconsideration cannot be used:

  • to ask for an exemption or exception to program criteria
  • as an opportunity to submit new evidence or re-state the evidence submitted in the Business Application or Final Report for AINP Nomination
  • if you are unsatisfied with the final decision or a component of the final decision
  • to request humanitarian and compassionate consideration

How to submit a request for reconsideration

Step 1. Complete the form

Download and fill out the Request for Reconsideration form (PDF, 535 KB)

Step 2. Pay the fee

All requests for reconsideration are subject to a service fee of $100.

Fee conditions

The AINP request for reconsideration fee will automatically be refunded by the AINP only if the original decision on your Business Application or Final Report for AINP Nomination is overturned. Other refunds for requests for reconsideration fees will not be considered.

Online payment

Pay online by debit or credit card at eservices.alberta.ca.

Make a copy of your fee payment receipt.

For any online fee payment issues, contact:

Service Alberta Contact Centre
Phone: 1-844-643-2788

Step 3. Submit your request

Email your completed Request for Reconsideration form, with supporting documents and a copy of your fee payment receipt, to [email protected].

If you do not include a copy of your fee payment receipt with your request, you will have 10 business days to provide proof of payment. If proof of payment is not received in 10 business days, your request will be cancelled.

After you submit a request for reconsideration

An automated email will be sent acknowledging receipt of the request.

A response will be issued within 30 calendar days of the date the request was received.

The AINP will review your Request for Reconsideration. If the request meets the conditions required, an AINP program officer who was not involved in the original decision will conduct a review of the decision.

There is no guarantee that a request for reconsideration will result in your Business Application or Final Report for AINP Nomination being re-assessed.

If you do not qualify to request reconsideration

If you do not meet the conditions listed above to request reconsideration, you may wish to review the AINP website for information and updates to AINP criteria, to determine if you meet the eligibility criteria to re-apply.

Forms and documents

AINP Business Plan (Guidelines) (PDF, 633 KB)

AINP Change of Contact and Address Information form (PDF, 384 KB)

AINP Portal Helpful Hints (PDF, 101 KB)

Authorization to Collect and Disclose Personal Information for Spouse, Common-Law Partners and Dependants (PDF, 192 KB)

FGSVS Business Application Document Checklist (PDF, 239 KB)

Net Worth Worksheet (PDF, 85 KB)

Request for Reconsideration form (PDF, 535 KB)

Request to Add or Remove Family Members (PDF, 317 KB)

Use of Representative form (PDF, 86 KB)

Contact

If you have questions about the program, submit an email to [email protected]