The individuals and entrepreneurs who have experience in business and wish to settle and establish, purchase, or invest in an NT business may be eligible for this. The eligibility depends on various factors, including their business plan for a viable business and the business’ potential to create employment opportunities for Canadians in that region.

Before the approved entrepreneurs receive a provincial nomination through this stream, they must complete a series of tasks relating to their proposed business.

Program Requirements



Express Entry Profile


Connection to Province


Job Offer


Language Proficiency


Level of Education

Level of education and/or certification needed to fulfill the business plan

Work Experience

Level of experience needed to fulfill the business plan

Investment Requirement

Investment: $150,000 CAD

Personal Net Worth: $250,000 CAD

Language Proficiency

In order to be eligible for this stream, the candidates need to demonstrate language proficiency in English or French corresponding to CLB level 4, which must be supported by results from an official language test taken within the 6 months preceding the application.

Level of Education

No minimum level of education is required to be eligible for this stream; however, the candidates must have the necessary education to successfully implement the proposed business plan.  

Work Experience

There is no lower limit to the work experience the candidate must have; however, they must have the necessary work experience that is required to successfully implement the proposed business plan.

Investment Requirement

The applicants to this stream must show a significant net worth and funds to invest in the business of choice. Entrepreneurs from foreign countries must demonstrate to have at least one-third ownership of the NT business that they’d buying or starting. In case a candidate’s personal net worth is more than $1 million CAD, they may own less than one-third of the business.

The area in which the proposed business will be established shall decide the minimum personal net worth and investment requirement. If purchasing a business in Yellowknife, the applicant must invest at least $300,000 CAD in business and must have a personal net worth of at least $500,000 CAD. For business operations outside Yellowknife, the minimum investment goes down to $150,000 and personal net worth should be at least $250,000.

A business performance agreement must also be signed by the candidate along with a good faith deposit of $75,000 CAD, which may be refunded upon the candidate meeting the conditions of the performance agreement. The conditions of the business performance agreement include:
•    The candidate must reside within 100 kilometres of the business they operate, and
•    The candidate must have resided in the Northwest Territories for at least 75% of the time while on a temporary work permit.

Application Procedure

This stream accepts applications from eligible candidates all the year around. The prospective applicants must build up a working business plan and travel to NT in order to know more about the business environment. After the business trip, the applicants will need to participate in an interview with the NT Business Stream staff. In case the applicant is able to demonstrate acceptable knowledge of the NT business environment and has a compelling business plan, they’ll be provided an invitation to submit their documents that support the business concept, which must be submitted within 60 business days.

If the documents are able to satisfy the Business Stream staff, the applicant will receive the invitation to formally apply to the program. The applicant gets 6 months to submit a complete application to the stream. If the candidate’s application gets accepted, the Business Stream staff begins creating the business performance agreement along with the candidate. Once the applicant submits the $75,000 CAD good faith deposit and signs the agreement, the NT issues a letter of support for a 2-year temporary work permit. Certain business categories of immigration allow foreign nationals to apply for temporary work permits, which allows them to work in Canada while establishing a business. These work permits are LMIA-exempt. In order to apply for such a work permit, the applicant must include a support letter issued by the province and submit the application to IRCC.

Once the IRCC issues the work permit, the applicant gets 60 days from the date of signature (“date signed”) on the work permit to submit a Business Stream arrival report form along with other documents. Going further, from the date of submission of the arrival report form, the applicant gets 6 months to develop the business and invest the required investment, per the signed business performance agreement. In order to receive a provincial nomination, the applicant will need to submit an interim report every six months until the conditions outlined in the performance agreement are met.

If the candidate happens to meet all of the conditions of the agreement, they may be eligible to receive a nomination for PR from the NT. It must be noted that a nomination can only be issued 19 months after the applicant has begun developing the business, and 12 months after the business has been in operation, except under exceptional circumstances. After the nomination has been received, the applicant gets 1 year to submit a federal application for Canadian PR.

It must be noted that the applicants must submit a completed paper-based application for PR by mail to the appropriate application centre. Such applications generally get processed within 18 months.