Thunder Bay, Ontario is currently accepting applications for the Rural Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) Program. They are however, limiting nominations to local candidates, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. So far, two community recommendations have been issued by Thunder Bay for workers under the National Occupation Code (NOC) Skill level B – Skilled Workers / Technical or Trade Occupations

The most recent published RNIP draw was on April 23rd by the city of Sudbury, Ontario, issuing 6 community recommendations.

In order to apply for the RNIP Thunder Bay, candidates must receive a full-time permanent job offer with an eligible employer in a priority occupation. Most of these occupations are in the healthcare and labour industries (Truck Drivers, Construction). Candidates must also meet both federal and community eligibility requirements. The Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission (CEDC) recommends people for permanent residence who have the skills and experience that the Thunder Bay economy needs, and the Government of Canada makes the final decision to approve applications for permanent residence.

The process is as follows:

  1. Candidates submit a complete application to the selection committee once they have a full-time job offer. Once submitted they will get a response within a month.
  2. If a candidate receives a recommendation from the community, they submit their permanent residency paperwork to IRCC. It will take approximately 1-3 months to get a confirmation of receipt (that their application is complete and going for processing).
  3. The entire RNIP immigration process could take up to a year to receive permanent residency

Thunder Bay has also indicated that only candidates who meet all of the federal eligibility criteria and meet the community requirements, such as job offer, in a priority occupation, with an approved employer are authorized to submit an application for community recommendation. Therefore, applications will not be accepted from those without a job offer with an approved employer.

It is up to the candidate to find their own jobs. Candidates are urged to connect directly with employers who are hiring in Thunder Bay. Vacancies from approved RNIP employers are posted on the community website at and also on various job boards.

Selection Factors

The CEDC uses “community recommendation factors” to assess candidates, which is based on language proficiency, qualifications/licenses/work experience, age, connection to the community, and spouse information (if applicable). Applications are then prioritized and candidates eligible for recommendation are those who are most likely to settle and reside in Thunder Bay and contribute to the local economy. The maximum points achievable is 138. Candidates must achieve 60% of the points before the selection committee will review their application. Highest scoring candidates will be further assessed for recommendation. Candidates with a spouse will be assessed using criteria that includes their spouse’s qualifications.  Single applicants will be assessed separately. All required documentation must be submitted in English or French.

Recommendations Capped by Skill Level

The annual allotment provided to the CEDC is 100 recommendations per year; however, there is a cap on the number of recommendations based on skill level. Currently, the cap for NOC Skill Level A is 10, NOC Skill B is 40, NOC Skill C is 40 and NOC Skill D is 10.

We would be happy to assist you with any questions you may have about the RNIP program. Feel free to send us an email at, or use our online contact form.