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The Alberta Rural Renewal Stream is a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) for newcomers who have job offers and community support from a designated rural community in the province of Alberta. The program is designed to improve immigration to Alberta’s smaller rural communities which often have difficulty attracting newcomers.

Certain rural communities across Alberta are considered ‘designated communities’ for the purposes of the Rural Renewal Stream. In order to be eligible, applicants must get a letter of endorsement from the community’s Economic Development Organization (EDO) and a job offer from an Alberta employer for a position in the community.

The Rural Renewal Stream is a part of the Alberta Advantage Immigration Program (AAIP).

For full eligibility criteria and application procedures, refer below.

Eligibility Criteria: The Alberta Rural Renewal Stream

Candidates interested in applying for provincial nomination through the Alberta Rural Renewal Stream must meet the following eligibility criteria.

Community residence requirement

Applicants must have the intention to reside and work in their designated community in the province of Alberta.

Community endorsement requirement

Applicants must have their applications endorsed by one of the rural communities that have been officially designated by the Rural Renewal Stream. The community endorsement is made through an official Endorsement of Candidate letter issued by the local Economic Development Organization (EDO).

The Endorsement of Candidate letter must include:

  • The name and address of the EDO
  • The applicant’s name and address
  • Details of the applicant’s job offer:
    • Name of the business
    • Name and contact information of the employer
    • Location of employment
    • Position and job duties
    • Employment duration & work conditions
  • Explanation of how the applicant’s job offer aligns with the economic growth of the designated community
  • Explanation of the employer’s efforts to fill the position from within Canada
  • Name, title, and contact information for the person issuing the Endorsement of Candidate letter

Job offer requirements

Applicants must have a full-time job offer or employment contract from an Alberta employer for a position located in the designated community. The job offer cannot be for a position on the list of ineligible occupations (listed below).

In order to be considered valid, the job offer must be for:

  • Continuous, paid work in the designated community
  • Full-time employment (minimum of 30 hours per week)
  • Employment for at least 12 months
  • Wages that meet or exceed the lowest starting wage for the occupation across all industries in Alberta (see here)
    • If the job offer is supported by a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), the occupation, wages, and benefits must meet or exceed the requirements laid out in the LMIA.

The following types of job offers are not eligible for the Rural Renewal Stream:

  • Part-time, casual, or season employees
  • Independent contractors, business owners, or temporary agency workers
  • Employees who work in a place of employment that is not zoned for commercial or industrial operations, like a home-based business
  • Employees who do not work on premises in Alberta, like those working remotely from another location

Ineligible occupations

Job offers for positions in the following occupations are not eligible to apply through the Alberta Rural Renewal Stream:

Alberta Rural Renewal Stream - Ineligible Occupations

Licensing, registration, and certification requirements

The applicant must have the necessary licensing, registration and certification for their occupation as per Alberta’s provincial standards. Occupation-specific requirements can be found on the Alis website.

Applicants with job offers in compulsory trades occupations must have a valid Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Trade (AIT) recognized trade certificate.

Applicants working as childcare workers in Alberta must have valid certification as a Level 2 or Level 3 Early Childhood Educator before applying.

Qualifying work experience requirements

Applicants must have a minimum of 12 months full-time work experience gained in an eligible occupation within the 18 months prior to application. This work experience must have been full-time and may be a combination of experience gained in Alberta, in Canada, and abroad.

Work experience requirements depend on the skill level of the applicant’s Alberta job offer:

TEER Category of job offer or current occupation is:TEER Category of work experience must be:
TEER 0TEER 0 or 1
TEER 1TEER 0, 1 or 2
TEER 2TEER 1, 2, 3 or 4
TEER 3TEER 1, 2, 3 or 4
TEER 4TEER 2, 3, 4 or 5
TEER 5TEER 5 and must be in the same occupation – NOC code

The work experience cannot have been obtained while studying in Canada, unless the applicant holds a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) who completed full-time, paid co-op work terms in Alberta and as part of a study program in Alberta.

*PGWP holders who have completed a two-year (or more) education program at a designated learning institution based in their designated community are exempt from the qualifying work experience requirement.

Language requirements

All applicants must meet minimum English or French language requirements. The requirements depend on the skill level of the applicant’s job offer:

  • For job offers at NOC TEER 0, 1, 2, or 3: Applicants must score a minimum of Canadian Language Benchmark Level 5 (CLB 5) on all four language skills.
  • For job offers at NOC TEER 4 or 5: Applicants must score a minimum of Canadian Language Benchmark Level 5 (CLB 5) on all four language skills.

Applicants must submit results from an approved language test as part of their application.

Education requirement

Applicants must have completed a minimum of high school education equivalent to the Canadian standard. If education was completed outside Canada, applicants must provide a copy of their Educational Credential Assessment (ECA).

Settlement funds requirements

Certain applicants have to demonstrate they have sufficient funds to support their settlement in the designated community. This is only required for applicants who:

  • Are not residing in Canada, or
  • Are residing in Canada but are not working.

The settlement funds required depends on the size of an applicant’s family, as well as the population size of their designated community:

Population size of the community and funds required
Number of family membersPopulation of less than 1,000Population of 1,000 to 30,000Population of 30,000 to 99,999
Amount of funds required for each additional family member$2,404$2,735$2,989

Funds must be readily available to the applicant. Real estate property, jewelry, cars, and other personal assets are not eligible.

If the applicant will be accompanied by a spouse, they can include the spouse’s funds, but they must show they have access to the money.

Applicants must provide a letter from any banks or financial institutions where the funds are kept.

How to apply for the Alberta Rural Renewal Stream

In order to apply for the Alberta Rural Renewal Stream, first candidates must meet the minimum eligibility requirements outlined above. Notably, this includes obtaining a valid job offer for a position located in a designated community, as well as the written support from an Economic Development Organization. If those steps have not been completed, they should be the first focus of hopeful applicants.

Once an applicant meets all eligibility requirements, the applicant may submit an application online using the AAIP Online Portal. Applicants must submit a non-refundable $500 application fee when submitting the application. The entire application must be submitted online, applications are not accepted by mail or in-person.

If an application is approved, the applicant will be issued an official provincial nomination. This allows the applicant to apply at the federal level for Canadian permanent resident status.

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About the author

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Rebecca Major

Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant
Rebecca Major is a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (R511564) with nearly 15 years of licenced Canadian Immigration experience, gained after graduating with a Bachelor of Laws in the UK. She specializes in Canadian immigration at Moving2Canada.
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