More Nigerians are choosing Canada as their new home. In 2022, over 20,000 Nigerians gained Canadian permanent residence. If you are from Nigeria and wish to settle in Canada, you can learn about your immigration options on this page.
Overview: Why immigrate from Nigeria to Canada?
Canada is a destination of choice for Nigerians for the economic opportunities it offers in various sectors it offers typically coveted by Nigerian professionals, namely the oil and gas sector, information and communication technology (ICT), health and other science and engineering related fields.
Canada also offers many advantages such as political stability, a thriving economy, a highly developed health care system, and an internationally recognized education system.
Some 70,000 Canadians of Nigerian descent currently call Canada home, and this number continues to grow every year. Most Nigerians arrive in Canada as skilled workers under the economic class. As Canada continues to increase its immigration levels year after year, the Nigerian diaspora in Canada is expected to grow even more from its current numbers.
How can you immigrate from Nigeria to Canada?
Due to factors such as high English proficiency, education level, and work experience, Nigerians are very well positioned to qualify for Canada’s immigration programs.
Federal Skilled Worker Program
If you are an overseas Nigerian immigration candidate, the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) may be the best option for you. The FSWP allows candidates with work experience and no connection to Canada or job offer to apply for permanent residence.
The program targets skilled workers who will be able to use their foreign work experience, education, language skills and other human capital factors to become economically established in Canada. More specifically, candidates must meet the following minimum requirements:
- One year of continuous full-time or equivalent paid work experience in the past 10 years in a skilled occupation classified under the National Occupational Classification (NOC) TEER category 0, 1, 2, or 3;
- Validated language ability equivalent to Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 7 in English or French across all abilities (reading, writing, listening, and speaking); and
- Canadian educational credential (certificate, diploma, or degree) or foreign credential and Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) report.
- FSWP applicants must get at least 67 points on IRCC’s six immigration selection factors.
- Show that you have enough money for you and your family to settle in Canada.
What to do if you are eligible for the FSWP
The FSWP is among the three programs managed under the Canadian government’s Express Entry application management system.
Once you confirm you are eligible for the FSWP, you may upload your Express Entry profile onto the website of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
Upon uploading their Express Entry profiles, Nigerian candidates receive a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score based on their human capital factors such as age, education, work experience, and official language ability among others.
Every two weeks, IRCC sends out invitations to apply for permanent residence to the highest scoring candidates in the pool. In addition, IRCC sets a 6-month processing service standard under Express Entry.
The target is for more than 110,000 permanent residents to be admitted through Express Entry per year. Together, these elements make Express Entry one of the most attractive options and the fastest way for economy class candidates to obtain permanent residence in Canada.
Provincial Nominee Program
The Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) is the other major option for Nigerian immigration candidates.
Canada is a federal country with 10 provinces and three territories, the majority of which administer the PNP. The program allows each province and territory, with its own population and economy, to design immigration pathways based on its economic and demographic needs.
Through the PNP, provinces and territories can nominate skilled worker candidates for immigration to their respective jurisdictions.
Nigerian candidates may be able to apply to immigrate to Canada directly through a PNP, provided they meet eligibility criteria. They may also enter the Express Entry pool and be invited to apply for nomination by a province that will select candidates from the federal pool. If they are nominated through an Express Entry-linked stream, they will receive an additional 600 CRS points. This means they are virtually guaranteed to receive an invitation to apply for permanent residence (ITA) in a subsequent Express Entry draw.