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  • Arisnel Mesidor, M.A., RCIC

Requirements for International Graduate Entrepreneur and Start-up Visa Streams eased by Alberta

Updated: Jan 13


The government of Alberta has eased the requirements for the Foreign Graduate Start-Up Visa Stream (FGSVS) and the International Graduate Entrepreneur Immigration Stream (IGEIS).


As of December 7, 2021, language requirements have been decreased to Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 5 from a minimum of CLB 7 for English or French for Foreign Graduate Start-Up Visa Stream. In addition, candidates who graduated in the last 10 years are eligible to apply under this stream. Previously, individuals who graduated only in the last 2 years could apply for this program.

For the International Graduate Entrepreneur Immigration Stream, the government eliminated the requirement for 6 months of mandatory work experience. Moreover, international graduates are eligible to apply for permanent residency (PR) if they just have a valid Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) at the time of submitting their Expression of Interest.


The FGSVS is an economic immigration program that nominates talented and qualified foreign educated graduates from outside Canada for permanent residence upon launching start-up enterprises and innovative businesses in Alberta. The Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP) and approved designated agencies work together with the FGSVS.


Foreign graduates who have interest in applying under the FGSVS must work with a designated agency. When the foreign graduate meets the AINP requirements, the designated agency will issue a letter of recommendation. The foreign graduate must then submit the letter of recommendation with their Expression of Interest (EOI) through the AINP Portal.


The International Graduate Entrepreneur Immigration Stream (IGEIS) allows Alberta to nominate qualified international graduates from Alberta post-secondary institutions. It also allows those who wants to establish or operate a business in Alberta to apply for permanent residence.



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