International Entrepreneur Category

The International Entrepreneur Category targets experienced business owners or senior business managers who want to build a new life, and continue their business career, in Newfoundland and Labrador.

The NLPNP International Entrepreneur Category is one of several immigration streams of the Newfoundland And Labrador Provincial Nominee Program (NLPNP), a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) operated by the province of Newfoundland And Labrador. The International Entrepreneur category is intended for experienced business owners or senior business managers who wish to permanently reside in Newfoundland and Labrador.  They must start a new business or buy an existing business and must actively participate in the day-to-day management of the business.  After operating the business for at least one continuous year, the international entrepreneur may be nominated for permanent resident status, subject to fulfillment of certain criteria outlined by the Office of Immigration and Multiculturalism.

The applicants intending to support regional economic development or focus on high-demand industries or sectors (e.g. Agriculture, Aquaculture, Technology, Natural Resources) may receive priority consideration.

Note: The Newfoundland and Labrador International Entrepreneur category will be accepting Expressions of Interest on September 13 to 20, 2019; October 11 to 18, 2019; November 8 to 15, 2019 and December 6 to 13, 2019. To check the current status of PNP. Please Visit At PNP Status Checker Tool.

Eligibility Requirements of Applicant

In order to be eligible for NLPNP International Entrepreneur Category, the international entrepreneur must meet the following requirements:

  • Age: The candidate must be 21 to 59 years of age to be eligible for NLPNP International Entrepreneur Category.
  • Language Proficiency: Applicants will be required to provide proof of language proficiency in English or French. At least the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level 5 is required.
  • Level of Education: Applicants must show that they have completed a minimum level of education equivalent to a Canadian high school diploma. If completed outside of Canada this must be supported by an Educational Credentials Assessment (ECA).
  • Work Experience: Candidates must have sufficient work experience to successfully establish and run a business in Newfoundland & Labrador. This can be demonstrated through at least two (2) years of experience as an active business owner-manager, or more than five (5) years of experience as a senior business manager.
  • Business Requirements: The candidate must provide a business plan with supporting financial documentation verified by a recognized by third-party professionals. The applicants are solely responsible for the payment of associated fees related to obtaining these documents. Also, the applicant needs to demonstrate that the business is a for-profit entity with the primary purpose of earning profits through the sale of goods and/or services.
  • Investment Requirement: The candidate must able to demonstrate at least $600,000 CAD in unencumbered net business and personal assets that can readily be transferred to Canada. The candidate must be able to invest at least $200,000 CAD of their own money to establish a business in the Newfoundland and Labrador with minimum ownership of 33.3 percent, or $1 million in equity investment.
  • Employment: The applicant needs to demonstrate the ability to create at least one full-time equivalent job for permanent residents or Canadian Citizens.
  • Visit To Newfoundland And Labrador: The applicant conducts a mandatory exploratory visit to Newfoundland and Labrador before starting a new business or purchasing an existing business.

Eligibility Requirements of Business – Additional Criteria

There are two streams within the International Entrepreneur category – Starting a New Business and Purchasing an Existing Business. Each stream has unique eligibility in addition to the eligibility noted above.

Starting a New Business Stream:

If starting a business, the applicant must create a minimum of one full-time equivalent employment opportunity for a Canadian citizen or permanent resident in Newfoundland and Labrador. This position must:

  • Be over and above any position filled by the approved applicant. For clarity, jobs created for or filled by dependents or relatives of the applicant are not eligible,
  • Be relevant and directly related to the applicant’s business, and
  • Meet the prevailing wage levels.

Purchasing an Existing Business:

If the applicant is purchasing an existing Newfoundland and Labrador business, all of the following apply:

  • The business must have been in continuous operation by the same owner for the previous five (5) years;
  • All applicants purchasing or partnering in an existing business must complete an exploratory visit to meet the current owner(s) if the applicant is applying from outside of the province;
  • Applicants must provide evidence that reasonable efforts were taken to establish a fair market value for the business;
  • The business must be actively in operation and not in receivership; and
  • Applicants must offer employment on similar terms and conditions to existing staff, including maintaining existing wages and employment terms.

Note: In the partnership, an international entrepreneur may propose up to 10 partners (i.e. the primary applicant and nine (9) additional partners) when applying. Partners may be other international entrepreneurs, Canadian citizens or permanent residents. If partners are also seeking permanent residence in Canada through this category, they must invest $200,000 (CDN) and have at least one-third (33.3 percent) ownership of the company; or must invest $1,000,000 or more. Participating partners must also demonstrate active involvement in the day-to-day management of the proposed business.


Ineligible Applicants for International Entrepreneur Category:

  • Individuals living illegally in their country of residence;
  • A person who has had a removal order issued against them by IRCC or Canada Border Services Agency;
  • A person who is prohibited from entering Canada;
  • A passive investor (individuals who intend to invest in a Newfoundland and Labrador business with very limited or no involvement in the day-to-day management of the business); and
  • An individual who does not have status (ineligible to apply until their status is restored).

Ineligible Businesses for International Entrepreneur Category:

  • Businesses that are conducted remotely (from another Canadian jurisdiction or from another country);
  • Property rental, investment, and leasing activities;
  • Real estate construction/development/brokerage, insurance brokerage or business brokerage; unless the applicant can prove their business in one of these areas is of compelling benefit to the Province;
  • Professional services or self-employed business operators requiring licensing or accreditation;
  • Payday loan, cheque cashing, money changing and cash machines;
  • Pawnbrokers;
  • Taxi companies;
  • Home-based businesses; unless the applicant can prove their business will have a compelling benefit to the Province;
  • Businesses involved in the production, distribution or sale of pornographic or sexually explicit products or services;
  • Not-for-profit businesses;
  • Investments into a business operated primarily for the purposes of deriving passive investment income;
  • Businesses operating primarily for the purpose of deriving investment income such as interest, dividends or capital gains;
  • Business that will compensate employees solely on the basis of commission;
  • Any other type of business that by association could tend to bring OIM, NLPNP, or the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador into disrepute.

Application Procedure

This program uses an International Entrepreneur Category EOI Points Grid (mentioned below) system to select applicants. In order to be considered for the program, first, a candidate must submit an EOI using the PNP’s online service. Please note that the EOI service only opens for short periods throughout the year. Candidates will be ranked against one another based on their EOIs and the most competitive candidates will be invited to apply to the program.

After receiving an Invitation to Apply (ITA) candidates must submit an official application for nomination to the province. This application includes documentation supporting the information included in the original EOI. As well, all applicants must pay an application fee of CAD $1,000 and must provide an Audit Report and a Business Establishment Plan, outlining their entrepreneurial intentions. If an application is deemed to be complete, the applicant will have to travel to Newfoundland and Labrador to participate in an in-person interview. If the interview is successful, the applicant must sign a Business Performance Agreement, detailing their commitments to establish or purchase a business in the province.

If an application is approved, the applicant will receive a work permit authorization letter allowing them to apply for a Canadian work permit. With the work permit in hand, the applicant must relocate to Newfoundland and Labrador to launch their business. After operating the business in accordance with their Business Performance Agreement the applicant may apply to the province for an official Provincial Nomination.

Once an applicant has received an official nomination, they can apply to IRCC for Canadian permanent resident status.

International Entrepreneur Category EOI Points Grid

The International Entrepreneur Points Grid reflects Newfoundland and Labrador’s provincial economic and labour market priorities, and awards points for factors such as language, education, work experience, adaptability and age. Each International Entrepreneur candidate must achieve a score of 72 in the application assessment in order to qualify under the NLPNP International Entrepreneur category. The maximum score possible is 120.

Overview of Factors

Factors Points
Language 32
Education 30
Business Ownership Experience 24
Newfoundland and Labrador Economic Priorities 12
Adaptability 10
Total Points Available 120


Age range Points Documents required
21-30 10 Birth certificate; passport; national identify document
31-40 12
41-50 8
51-59 4
60+ 0
Maximum Points  12


First official language Points awarded
Speaking Listening Reading Writing Total
CLB level 7 or higher 6 6 6 6 24
CLB level 6 5.5 5.5 5.5 5.5 22
CLB level 5 5 5 5 5 20
Second official language Points awarded
CLB level 5 or higher 2 points per ability 8
Maximum points 32


Education Level Points Documents required
Completion of Doctoral level (PhD) degree
Transcripts; Diploma / Degree; Letter from University confirming completion
of PhD; Educational Credential Assessment (ECA)
Completion of Master’s level degree
20 Transcripts; Diploma / Degree; ECA
Completion of a post-secondary degree or diploma of two (2) years or longer
15 Transcripts; Diploma / Degree; ECA
Canadian high school diploma or equivalent foreign credential
12 Transcripts; Diploma / Degree; ECA
Completion of a Canadian post-secondary degree or diploma of two (2) years or longer
6 Transcripts; Diploma / Degree
Maximum Points  30

Business Ownership Experience

Ownership Experience Points Documents required
Ownership of business for three (3) years or more
  • Resume
  • Business registration/license
  • Tax registration
  • Reference letters
  • Labour contracts
  • Pay stubs or payroll records
  • Income certificate
  • Income statement
Ownership of business for two (2) to three (3) years
Senior Management Experience over five (5) years
Maximum Points  24

Prospective international entrepreneur candidates may claim points for business ownership experience. All potential applicants must have either a minimum of two (2) years of business ownership experience in the past 10 years (including a minimum 25% ownership) and an active role in the management and operations of a company OR greater than five years of experience in a senior management role in the past 10 years.

Those individuals claiming five (5) or more years of senior management work experience must demonstrate that their work experience was in an occupation that corresponds to Canada’s National Occupational Classification (NOC) 2016 Skill Type 0, Skill Level A or B. A reference letter from previous employers can be used as proof of this experience. However, the reference letter must meet the requirements of the program.

Newfoundland And Labrador Economic Priorities

Economic Priorities Points Documents required
Business in Technology, Agriculture, Aquaculture, or Natural Resources 8
Incorporation Documents; Proof of registration with CRA; industry-specific permits; other proof as required.
Business in sector not listed as priority above 4
Business in Rural Area (Outside St. John’s CMA)
Maximum Points  12


Education Level Points Documents required
Relatives in Newfoundland and Labrador
6 Proof of status (PR card, passport); Proof of relationship; proof of residency (bills, lease, employer’s letter).
Previous work experience in Newfoundland and Labrador of two (2) years or more (contract of service, i.e. waged employment)
Reference letters from previous employers.
Previous work experience in Newfoundland and Labrador of one (1) to two (2) years (contract of service, i.e. waged employment)
Maximum Points  10

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