This Rural Entrepreneur Immigration Program would allow communities to pair with immigrants who want to start and manage their businesses in small towns. As per Minister Kenney, “Rural communities are facing population and stagnation and decline.” “This is exacerbated by many older business owners not having interested buyers to take over their businesses.” With this program, immigrants can have at least 51% stake in their business.
When an immigrant is interested, has good faith and puts in effort in starting or investing in a business in Alberta, they can expect to be granted permanent residency and then eventually, citizenship. This program is community-driven which means that the communities will have the advantage of evaluating prospective candidates who best fit the economic needs of these community, have genuine employment opportunity that meets their community requirements and have the intention of staying in the community. In addition, the communities will also recommend candidates for permanent residency and connect newcomers with settlement services and mentoring opportunities with established members of the community. *
Usually, urban areas are the go-to place for young, up and coming entrepreneurs. It would seem that the best way to start a business would be starting it in an urban area, full of people who are ready to get the ball rolling. As exciting as that seems, you would have to realize how much competition there is in an urban area. Here’s where the rural Alberta shines. There are so many things to love in a rural community; close-knit relationships that will make you feel very welcomed, close to nature, fresher and cleaner environment and a more relaxed life compared to the “city” life.
The advantages of starting a business in a rural community are (1) Less competition; Rural communities will have lesser population compared to urban areas and this is considered a benefit because there are specific types of businesses that are not available in rural areas in comparison to urban areas. For instance, being a newcomer with exciting business ideas such as opening a Malaysian restaurant in a rural area will possibly make you the only one with the idea. It will be beneficial for both the business owner and the residents as they do not have to travel much to go to a Malaysian restaurant when they have one right in their community. A big win for a small, organically grown business. (2) Accessible financing; Urban areas tend to have stricter rules or have certain restrictions when it comes to business loans. In rural areas however, banks will be easily accessible as they operate according to the terms and conditions in their current place. Direct loans will be given since overhead costs are much cheaper and that means they will not have to go through a third party. This most certainly will help make things easier for newcomers who want to start their business in rural areas. (3) Reduced overhead costs; rural communities tend to have lower overhead expenses because of some economic factors. This just means more profit for business owners as they will spend less on expenses and have some funds to enhance their products and services. (4) Improve the economy of a small town; it’s really different setting up a business in a rural area compared to an urban are because in an urban area like New York, you are most likely not making much of a difference in terms of economy because there are already thousands of businesses in that city. But when a newcomer starts a business in a rural area, it directly affects and helps the small town to stay afloat. Moreover, entrepreneurs in rural areas have been statistically related to lower unemployment levels, poverty, greater income levels and more.
Some of the greatest opportunity lies in rural Alberta, specifically between the Calgary and Edmonton corridor. It is here where affordability and opportunity meet for newcomers. The smaller communities have a greater capacity to absorb newcomers because of their strong culture of family. Immigrants that choose to settle in these smaller towns, will integrate better into the Albertan way of life, an develop stronger, more organic connections with their neighbours in a shorter time frame. In most cases it is in the rural communities where the immigrants will be able to establish roots faster and integrate better than in the large metropolitan areas of the province which the overwhelming majority of immigrants choose to settle because it’s “what they know.”
We believe that every province in Canada and Western nation in the world will soon want to model their economic immigration policy after Alberta’s brilliant upcoming provincial immigration programs. We wish to thank the powerful team in the Alberta government that is committed to working for the success of the people of Alberta and for newcomers to this great province.
- The Honourable Muhammad Yaseen – Parliamentary Secretary of Immigration
- The Honourable Jason Copping – Minister of Labour and Immigration
- Shawn Mcleod – Deputy Minister Labour and Immigration
- Janet McEachern – Chief of Staff of Minister of Labour and Immigration
- Percy Cummins – Executive Director, Evidence, Polic and Governance
- Lori Zaparniuk – Director, Labour Market Evidence
- Simrat Slade – Senior Economist, Government of Alberta
- Piotr Weclaw – Director, Department of Labour
- Lenore Neudorf – Assistant Deputy Minister, Ministry of Labour, Alberta
- The Honourable Jason Kenney – Premier and Champion of Alberta
For more information on Rural Entrepreneur Immigration Program,contact us.
Sean G McKinsley, Managing Partner & Founder
RCIC & ICCRC Member R529731
Nikola Misina, Partner
RCIC & ICCRC Member R524218
Steve Paolasini, Senior National Vice-President, B. Eng