The Skilled Workers in Manitoba (SWM) category of the Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program (MPNP) is aimed at helping skilled temporary workers in the province immigrate to Manitoba, Canada as Canadian permanent residents.
Manitoba recognizes that foreign workers and international graduates in Manitoba are among the best-suited newcomers to make a permanent life in the province, to establish themselves quickly and successfully, and to make a positive contribution to Manitoba’s economy and community.
Manitoba may be less well-known than populous provinces such as Ontario and British Columbia, but it should not be overlooked. Many newcomers find Manitoba is a fulfilling destination with plentiful career opportunities and a high standard of living. The province is actively looking to bolster its workforce by welcoming newcomers and their families.
The Skilled Workers in Manitoba category is not aligned with the federal Express Entry system. If you have an offer for a permanent and ongoing job for a company in Manitoba and you have been working for the company for at least six months, you could be able to apply for permanent residence — even if you are not eligible for Express Entry. You do not need an Express Entry profile in order to apply to the Skilled Workers in Manitoba category, and successful applicants will not obtain 600 points under the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS).
Candidates who meet the eligibility criteria can submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) and enter the candidate pool, at which point they are assigned a points score out of 1,000. During periodic draws, top-ranking candidates in the pool are invited to submit a full application to the MPNP, and if they are successful, they can then apply directly to the Canadian government for permanent resident status.
The MPNP has been planning an overhaul of its immigration programs for the last several years. Changes were initially scheduled to come into effect in 2018, but have been delayed for several years. Among these changes, two new pathways will be added to the Skilled Workers in Manitoba category: Manitoba Work Experience, and Employer Direct Recruitment.
Skilled Workers in Manitoba criteria
In order to be eligible to submit an EOI through Skilled Workers in Manitoba category, you must:
- be working in Manitoba for a Manitoba-based employer;
- have worked for your current employer for at least six months (continuously) and have a long-term (or indefinite), full-time job offer from the same employer;
- hold a valid temporary work permit (post-graduation work permits are acceptable);
- have a sufficient language ability to fulfill your job duties;
- show sufficient settlement funds and a connection to Manitoba that is stronger than any connection to another province; and
- prepare a Settlement Plan to demonstrate your intention to settle in Manitoba.
Your employer will also need to demonstrate that it is an established company in Manitoba and able to offer you a long-term, full-time job.
International graduates who studied in Canada but outside Manitoba may still be eligible to enter the pool through the Skilled Workers in Manitoba category. However, graduates who studied in Canada but outside Manitoba and then moved to Manitoba to work need to work for their employer for at least one year (instead of six months) before they may become eligible.
It is important to note that some types of work experience cannot count towards the six-month (or one-year) work experience requirement. Time spent self-employed or as an independent contractor, working when unauthorized to do so (for example, working without a work permit), or working during full-time education cannot be included in the requirement.