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Alberta Foreign Graduate Start-Up Visa Stream

Launched on Jan. 27, 2021, the Foreign Graduate Start-up Visa Stream (FGSVS) is the latest pathway introduced to attract foreign talent into Canada. Even if you graduated outside of Canada, you may now apply to this new economic class program in which Alberta nominates talented and qualified foreign educated graduates for permanent residence upon launching start-up enterprises and innovative businesses in the province.


Only candidates who graduated from a post-secondary institution outside Canada in the last two years are eligible for FGSVS. Your educational credential must be equal to a Canadian degree as proven by an educational assessment (ECA).


Other eligibility criteria include:

  • a minimum of six months of full-time work experience in business ownership/management or business incubator/accelerator

  • a business plan with financial forecasts

  • a 10-minute business proposal presentation

  • a minimum CLB level of 7 for each skill in English or French (IELTS, CELPIP, TEF, TCF)

  • the ability to demonstrate 34% ownership (if business is located in an urban area) or 51% ownership (if business is located in regional areas outside Calgary and Edmonton)

  • minimum investment from own equity (or spouses), along with investment from a recognized financial institution, venture capital, or angel investor in Canada. The mandatory minimum investment for an urban centre is $100,000 CAD while the mandatory minimum investment for a regional area is $50,000

  • a letter of recommendation from the AINP-approved designated agency

  • the funds needed to set up the business and support themselves while launching the start-up based on Low Income Cut-Offs (LICO), see table below.

The information provided by an eligible candidate on an Expression of Interest (EOI) will be assessed by AINP and points will be awarded based on the FGSVS points grid. Candidates with the highest-ranking points will be invited to submit a Business Application.

Information to be assessed include:

  • EOI

  • Business Plan

  • Pitch Deck

  • Net Worth Worksheet

  • Letter of Recommendation from a Designated Agency

  • and if applicable:

  • Authorization to Collect and Disclose Personal Information for Spouse, Common-Law Partners and Dependents

Certain business types are not eligible under this program such as passive investment types, home-based businesses, bed & breakfast etc... Contact us for an eligibility assessment of your immigration situation as well as your eligibility for nomination as a permanent resident (PR) from the government of Alberta under this provincial nominee stream.


There are, also, other alternatives in Alberta for permanent residence nomination based on your situation. These include the Alberta Opportunity Stream and Alberta Express Entry Stream, skilled workers and international graduates may also apply to buy or start a business in Alberta via two other streams. Recent international graduates from Alberta post-secondary institutions may start a business and gain entry to permanent residency via the International Graduate Entrepreneur Immigration Stream.


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