The economic development experts in Thunder Bay, Ontario recently gave their endorsement to the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP). According to Emily Lauzon, the workforce development officer at Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission says that the RNIP has been an integral part of their human resource planning.
Thunder Bay has a stagnant population growth with an aging population. This means many organizations are proactively trying to hire foreign workers to avoid the oncoming labor shortages.
What Is the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP)?
Launched in 2019, the RNIP targets foreign nationals recommended by the participating communities, provided the applicant meets other minimum eligibility requirements. This program was introduced to promote economic immigration to the rural and northern communities of Canada. Currently, the following 11 communities across Canada are participating in this pilot:
- North Bay
- Sault Ste. Marie
- Thunder Bay
- Moose Jaw
- West Kootenay
To participate in this pilot, communities must meet the following requirements:
- Have a population of at least 50,000 or less
- Be located at least 75 kilometers from a core Metropolitan Area, or
- Have a population of at least 200,000 and be considered remote from other larger cities by the Statistics Canada Remoteness Index
To obtain permanent residence through this pilot program, applicants must meet both community and federal requirements. They must have a valid job offer from an employer in the community to qualify for this program.