Alberta holds stunning natural scenery, vibrant cities, strong oil and gas industries, and below average cost of living. It embodies diversity and leans heavily on immigrants to fill skills gaps and grow its economy.

Want to immigrate to Alberta? Yes, you CAN DO it!

Alberta is the westernmost of the three prairie provinces in Canada, and one of only two landlocked provinces in the country. It is known for its vast natural resources, ranging from the country’s largest deposits of oil and gas through to the stunning natural scenery – particularly in Banff, Lake Louise, and Jasper. The abundant work opportunities, low cost of living, and incredible natural resources make it a popular place for singles and young families to settle.

There are almost 4.5 million people currently living in Alberta. [1] This number is expected to increase to 6.4 million by 2046, with more than 54% of that growth being accounted for by immigration.[2] Alberta is already known to be quite ethnically diverse, and it seems that trend is set to continue into the future.

Alberta is Canada’s sunniest province[3] and a true four-season destination. In summertime, the average temperature is between 20-25°C but can reach the mid-thirties during the peak of summer. Residents and tourists alike take advantage of the delightful summer and shoulder season climates to explore the stunning scenery from Alberta’s glacial lakes in the Rockies, to the plains and Badlands in the east. As winter falls, so do the temperatures – as a result of the high humidity. Alberta’s idyllic ski resorts can see up to 9 metres of snowfall during ski season, which runs between November and April each year.[4] During this time, the Canadian Rockies are transformed into a winter wonderland offering some of the best skiing and seasonal entertainment in Canada.

Alberta is Canada’s fourth largest province, behind Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia. It is nestled between British Columbia to the west and Saskatchewan to the east, with the US state of Montana to the south, and the vast North-West Territories to the north. Edmonton, the province’s capital city, is located in its geographic centre. It is a vibrant and thriving city that boasts incredible culture, history, and attractions, including Canada’s largest shopping centre, the West Edmonton Mall. The province’s most populous town, Calgary, is about 280km south of Edmonton. Home to the world-renowned Calgary Stampede, an annual rodeo, exhibition, and festival, it may surprise you that the city is a melting pot of cultural diversity and community spirit.

Alberta is home to the largest deposits of oil and gas in Canada. These natural deposits are abundant enough to rank Alberta amongst the highest producers of crude oil and natural gas in the world.[5] The oil and gas industries create ample work opportunities, while contributing to 30% of all economic activity in the province.[6]  Other key sectors in the Wild Rose Province include financial services, energy and cleantech, technology and data, agriculture, aviation and logistics, and tourism.[7] Real estate, construction, and manufacturing also contribute significantly to Alberta’s GDP. [8]

Quality of life in Alberta is quite high, with residents enjoying higher average family income and lower than average cost of living. This is due in part to the fact that the provincial taxes are amongst the lowest in the country. There is no provincial sales tax, no provincial health care premiums are charged, and personal tax rates are also comparatively low. Housing costs in Alberta are, on average, $1,247 per month for a 2-bed rental apartment.[9] This is about equal to the cost of housing the neighbouring province of Saskatchewan, and lower than the $1,515 average for a 2-bed rental apartment in British Columbia.[10]

Alberta views immigration as critical to its population and economic growth. The province welcomed 23,000 new permanent residents in 2020.[11] Applicants interested in immigrating to Alberta have a range of options. In addition to the federal Express Entry programs, the Albertan government offers a provincial nomination program to attract skilled immigrants. The provincial program is called the ‘Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program’ (AINP), which allows Alberta to nominate prospective immigrants that can help meeting the province’s needs for workers and entrepreneurs.

Alberta currently offers provincial nomination under two categories: Streams for workers and Streams for entrepreneurs. Under the worker category, there are two streams available. The Alberta Opportunity Stream is for qualified candidates who live and work in Alberta and have a qualifying job offer from an Albertan employer.

The International Graduate Entrepreneur Immigration Stream is available to recent international graduates of an approved Alberta post-secondary institution who want to start or buy a business. Foreign graduates from outside of Canada who want to start a business in Alberta may apply under the Foreign Graduate Start-Up Visa Stream. Self-employed farmers may also be nominated by the province under a separate stream.

Undoubtedly, Alberta offers abundant opportunities for those planning to immigrate to Canada. Keep the Province in mind whether you are looking for affordable cost of living or employment in the oil and natural gas industries.

Want to immigrate to Alberta? Yes, you CAN DO it!

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[1] Government of Alberta. - accessed on August 12, 2021.

[2] Government of Alberta. - accessed on August 12, 2021.

[3] Government of Alberta. - accessed on August 12, 2021.

[4] Government of Alberta. - accessed on August 13, 2021.

[5] Government of Alberta. - accessed on August 13, 2021.

[6] Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers. - accessed August 13, 2021.

[7] Government of Alberta. - accessed on August 13, 2021.

[9] Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. - accessed on August 13, 2021.

[10] Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. – accessed on August 13, 2021.