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The Ontario Corporate Stream has been terminated and is no longer accepting applications. Please refer below for the program criteria prior to its termination.

This stream was terminated on July 8, 2019. The stream is no longer accepting applications. Learn more

The Ontario Corporate Stream is unique in the Canadian immigration landscape. This Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) stream helps established international corporations expand into Ontario or buy an existing business in the province.

Through the Ontario Corporate Stream, key staff may eventually obtain Canadian permanent resident status having fulfilled the terms of a Performance Agreement and applied for provincial nomination under the OINP. Successful applicants to the Corporate Stream may first arrive in Canada on a temporary work permit.

Unlike the Ontario Entrepreneur Stream, the Corporate Stream does not operate on an Expression of Interest / Invitation to Apply basis. Eligible applicant corporations may apply directly to the OINP.

Ontario Corporate Stream eligibility criteria

There are requirements for the corporation, the investment, the proposed business, and key staff.

Corporate Requirements

At the time of the application, international corporations must have been established for at least 36 months.

In addition, the applicant corporation must meet the following requirements:

  • There must be a clear structural linkage between the Parent Corporation and proposed new business in Ontario (e.g. a subsidiary, branch or affiliate of the corporation).
  • The business must intend to make a profit through the sale of goods and/or services.
  • Primary income sources must be from active (earned) income, not passive (unearned) income.
  • The proposed business must comply with Canadian legal requirements and all regulatory industry and licensing requirements which govern its legitimate operation.
  • The proposed business must comply with all provincial labour laws.
  • The proposed business must be considered a permanent business in Ontario.
  • Applicant corporations must submit a business plan that explains the:
    • purpose and objectives of the proposed business, including products, target markets, and operational strategies;
    • operational and financial goals;
    • challenges that lie between the execution of the business plan and the achievement of its purpose, objectives, and goals; and
    • strategies for overcoming challenges.

If purchasing an existing business in Ontario, the following conditions also apply:

  • Any existing business must have been in continuous operation by the same owner for the previous 60 months.
  • The purchase must completely transfer ownership from the previous owner(s) to the corporation.
  • The business must not have been previously owned or operated by current or former OINP business stream nominees.
  • The proposed business plan must grow the business; buy-and-hold strategy business plans with no intent to grow the business are not permitted.
  • Applicants must maintain at a minimum the current wage levels and employment terms of existing staff, preserve all existing permanent full-time jobs, and meet the job creation commitment.

If the proposed business is a land development or leasehold company, the following criteria also apply:

  • Limit of three projects per year.
  • The proposed activity must be a permanent, ongoing business that seeks to expand or improve the current status of the land site, as well as ensure that the investing company has an ongoing and active management role in the proposed business.
  • Eligible leasehold companies must produce the proposed good or deliver a service of their own and not just set-up to manage the operations of other companies to make a profit.
  • Eligible land development companies have to demonstrate that the proposed business is a long-term and non-speculative investment and that the associated land development will be an integral part of the core ongoing business enterprise.
  • Corporations must provide local site certification documents and/or related local planning authority approval.
  • In the two-year monitoring period, the corporation must demonstrate that all of the commitments outlined in the Performance Agreement are met to setup the proposed operations and support the ongoing business in order to be eligible for nomination.

Investment Requirements

The corporation must make a minimum investment of $5 million, obtained from legal sources, to expand into Ontario or purchase an existing business in the province.

The proposed investment activity must be of significant economic benefit to Ontario. This will be determined through an assessment of the corporation’s business plan. If the corporation is intending to purchase an existing business in Ontario, there are additional criteria (see below, ‘purchasing an existing business in Ontario’).

Local job creation requirements

The corporation must create five new full-time permanent jobs for Canadians or permanent residents per each key staff being nominated. Positions must be paid at or above the prevailing wage level for that position. The position must be continuously filled for at least 10 months prior to the submission of the Final Report (see below).

Seasonal or part-time employees, subcontractors, agency workers, and employees who do not work on the company’s premises are not eligible under the Corporate Stream.

UPDATE: Canada uses a new occupation classification system. As the stream has been terminated, the eligibility requirements have not been updated. Learn more about NOC 2021.

Key Staff and position requirements

Applicant corporations may request up to five key staff members who will establish the business in Ontario and who are seeking nomination to relocate to the province permanently. To apply with the corporation under the OINP Corporate Stream, these key staff must:

  • Be essential to the establishment and operation of the proposed business;
  • Be in a senior, executive, management or specialized knowledge capacity (National Occupation Classification 0 or A) in the applicant corporation’s existing business (only one key staff in a NOC A position may be proposed);
  • Have at least 36 months of experience in the last 60 months in the intended occupation (the position they will hold in the proposed business in Ontario) with the applicant corporation;
  • Be continuously working for the applicant corporation in that position in the immediate 12 months prior to the submission of the application;
  • Not have an immediate family relationship with any member of the corporation’s Executive Board or Board of Directors or shareholders with more than 10 percent equity in the applicant corporation (immediate family members include spouses, mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, grandparents and spouse’s immediate family members);
  • Not hold equity in the company, except in the case where that equity has been obtained as part of the remuneration package as part of the employee contract, in which case the equity held by the key staff must be less than 10 percent of the corporate applicant’s business; and
  • Be taking on permanent full-time positions in the proposed business in Ontario that meet the prevailing wage levels.

Additionally, in order to be nominated for permanent resident status, key staff must:

  • Be in the position for which they were approved by the OINP and carrying out the approved job duties;
  • Physically reside in Ontario for at least 75 percent of each year that they are in Ontario under a temporary work permit to support the business; and
  • Have a language proficiency equivalent to Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 5 or better in English or French.

Note: Applicants and key staff may be required to attend a mandatory in-person interview at OINP offices to get a better understanding of the business plan and past experience.

Ineligible businesses

The OINP will not accept applications if the proposed business falls into one of the following categories.

Ineligible businesses in the GTA

  • Existing franchises in Ontario (new foreign franchises expanding into Ontario are permitted)
  • Gas Stations
  • Tire Recycling
  • Scrap Metal Recycling
  • Pawnbrokers
  • Bed and Breakfasts
  • Holding Companies
  • Laundromats
  • Automated Car Wash Operations
  • Payday loan and related businesses
  • Businesses which have been previously owned/operated by current or former OINP business stream nominees

Ineligible businesses outside the GTA

  • Tire Recycling
  • Scrap Metal Recycling
  • Pawnbrokers
  • Holding Companies
  • Laundromats
  • Automated Car Wash Operations
  • Payday loan and related businesses
  • Businesses which have been previously owned/operated by current or former OINP business stream nominees

Performance Agreement

Approved applicants will be required to sign a Performance Agreement with OINP, outlining the commitments that the applicant corporation must achieve in order for the key staff to be eligible for nomination for permanent resident status.

The Performance Agreement will include, but may not be limited to:

  • A description of the business;
  • The investment amounts and timelines;
  • The number and type of positions to be created for Canadian citizens or permanent residents;
  • Mandatory business milestones and achievements; and
  • Timeframes for any commitments.

If the approved applicant corporation ultimately fails to satisfy the OINP that the business has successfully met the business commitments outlined in the Performance Agreement, the key staff will not be eligible to be nominated for permanent resident status.

Once the Performance Agreement has been have signed by the applicant(s), Ontario will issue a Letter of Confirmation so that Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) can issue a temporary work permit. Key staff may bring their spouse/common-law partner, as well as any dependent children, with them to Canada.

After arrival in Ontario, applicants have up to 20 months to implement the business plan and meet all commitments made under the Performance Agreement. Then, a Final Report must be submitted to the OINP between 18 and 20 months after arrival in Ontario. The Final Report is meant to show that all Performance Agreement objectives have been satisfied.

Final Report and Nomination

The applicant corporation is responsible for submitting a Final Report to OINP between 18 and 20 months after the key staff arrive in Ontario with their valid temporary work permits. The Final Report must be submitted to OINP in order to initiate the nomination process. The Final Report should demonstrate that the applicant corporation has met the commitments outlined in the Performance Agreement.

If the terms of the Performance Agreement have been satisfied, key staff may then apply individually for provincial nomination. Successful applicants who obtain a provincial nomination may then apply for permanent residence in Canada.

Get help with your application

Do you need assistance in preparing an application for Canadian permanent residence? If so, view our Book an Immigration Consultant page to see Moving2Canada’s list of recommended, accredited representatives who can assist you in your goals.

Citation "Ontario Corporate Stream (terminated)." Moving2Canada. . Copy for Citation