Ontario is the most economically developed province of Canada. The share of the provincial GDP is 39% of the national GDP and is almost CAD $795 billion. At the same time, GDP per capita is CAD $56,000. One of the reasons for such high economic indicators is Ontario’s large population. According to the 2016 census, the population of Ontario is almost 14 million. In addition, the largest Canadian city Toronto with a population of 2731571 inhabitants is in Ontario. Toronto is also the third biggest city in North America just after New York and Los Angeles. The population of the Greater Toronto Area (Toronto and its suburbs), is 6,417,516! It is about the same as the population of countries such as Denmark, Bulgaria, Serbia or Israel. Moreover, about 53% of Toronto’s residents are immigrants who were not born in Canada. The 2016 census showed that the city is home to more than 17% of all recent immigrants in Canada, although less than 8% of Canada’s population lives in Toronto. The city authorities expect to receive about 170,000 new immigrants in the next three years.
The provincial authorities are making great efforts to attract even more immigrants to Ontario, and for this purpose, they spent a lot of time to develop a provincial immigration program within the framework of the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP). For instance, Ontario selects immigrants in four categories: the Ontario Express Entry, the category of candidates with a job offer, the student category and the category of business immigrants and entrepreneurs.
The motivation of the provincial authorities is extremely simple – Ontario is looking for those immigrants who have more chances for success in the province. In each of the categories, the province creates the most flexible conditions for preferred candidates. For example, graduates of Ontario universities who have completed a master’s or doctoral program receive preferential conditions for immigration within the master’s and doctoral streams, respectively, and within the framework of Ontario Express Entry: Human Capital Priorities stream, the Province sends invitations to candidates from the Express Entry pool, who have at least 400 points. Usually, candidates need 440-450 points to get the Invitation to Apply, and therefore many candidates do not get enough points. Ontario gives such candidates a provincial nomination, for which they receive 600 additional points.
The province of Ontario provides a set of unique opportunities for immigration that are not available in other parts of Canada.