Bruce Ralston, Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology, was in Courtenay Thursday to announce the launch of a new Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) Entrepreneur Immigration Regional Pilot. At right is Courtenay-Comox MLA Ronna-Rae Leonard. (Scott Stanfield/Comox Valley Record)

Immigration pilot program intends to grow economies

After looking around B.C., Zhao Zhengfu and his family recognized the potential of running a business in Courtenay.

With help from the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP), he was able to purchase the Union Street Grill and Grotto on Fifth Street.

“We’re incredibly proud to have established roots here and grown our restaurant in Comox Valley,” Zhengfu said at a Thursday event at his restaurant, where the B.C. government announced a new PNP Entrepreneur Immigration Regional Pilot.

“This pilot will help advance prosperity for the community and the people who live here,” said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology. “With the support of participating communities, British Columbia, I’m convinced, can attract more entrepreneurs like Zhao.”

The pilot is intended to help meet economic development needs of regional communities, and to encourage investments outside urban areas.

“As a region with an aging demographic, immigration has played an important role in recent years as new business startups and successions in our communities,” Courtenay Mayor Bob Wells said.

Courtenay and Comox are among the many B.C. communities participating in the pilot.

To participate, communities must have settlement and business supports in place to help newcomers integrate. They must also have a population of fewer than 75,000, and be located 30 kilometres away from a municipality of more than 75,000. Another stipulation is to identify three priority economic development sectors.

Applicants need to have a personal net worth of $300,000, make a minimum investment of $100,000 in a new business and create one new job.

Since 2010, the existing entrepreneur immigration program has generated more than 2,000 jobs in B.C. This new pilot will be delivered for an initial two-year period.

To learn more about the BC Provincial Nominee Program, visit https://bit.ly/2p46f7O

Just Posted

City, Courtenay Legion collaborate on special tulip project

1,000+ tulip bulbs planted in advance of the 75th anniversary of the Liberation of the Netherlands

Cumberland wastewater procurement process should come in 2020

Construction on the first phase of the lagoon would likely begin in 2021

Elizabeth May juggles Island tour to make stop in Comox

Green leader takes exception to latest tactics from the NDP over minority government question

NDP leader Jagmeet Singh to campaign in Port Alberni

Singh joins Courtenay-Alberni candidate for rally to kick off final weekend before election

VIDEO: First all-female spacewalk team makes history

NASA astronauts Christina Koch and Jessica Meir did work on International Space Station’s power grid

Zantac, the over-the-counter heartburn drug, pulled in Canada, U.S.

Health Canada also investigates possible carcinogen in some ranitidine drugs

Town of Comox, RCMP complete investigations into allegations of staff misconduct

The Town of Comox, as well as the RCMP, have concluded their… Continue reading

B.C. public safety minister says cannabis edibles not in stores til January

Mike Farnworth says he wants regional issues considered when it comes to licensing

Greta Thunberg calls for climate action in Alberta, but doesn’t talk oilsands

Swedish teen was met with some oil and gas industry supporters who came in a truck convoy

Scheer denies spreading ‘misinformation’ in predicting unannounced Liberal taxes

Conservative leader had claimed that a potential NDP-Liberal coalition could lead to a hike in GST

Council asks to limit cruise ship visits to Victoria harbour

Mayor says motion is not meant to curtail current visits or limit local cruise industry expansion

Chilliwack man pleads guilty in crash that killed pregnant woman

Frank Tessman charged under Motor Vehicle Act for accident that killed Kelowna school teacher

Kawhi Leonard, former Toronto Raptor, welcomed back to Vancouver at pre-season game

Fans go wild at pre-season game between L.A. Clippers and Dallas Mavericks at Rogers Arena

Most Read