February 29, 2024

How to Immigrate to Canada in 2024 as a Pakistani Citizen

Canada is a land of opportunity, attracting millions from around the world with its diverse culture, high quality of life, and welcoming immigration policies. As a Pakistani citizen, you have multiple pathways to consider when embarking on your journey to become a Canadian permanent resident. This comprehensive guide will explore Canada's immigration plan, its implications for Pakistani citizens, and the various pathways available, outlining eligibility requirements and the application process.

Canada's Immigration Plan

Canada boasts a high immigration rate, welcoming a significant number of newcomers each year. The current plan aims to bring in 485,000 new permanent residents in 2024, rising to 500,000 in 2025 and 2026. This ambitious plan reflects Canada's commitment to attracting skilled individuals who can contribute to the nation's economic growth and social fabric.

What Does This Mean for Pakistani Citizens?

Pakistani citizens hold a significant presence in Canada, forming one of the top source countries for new immigrants. With over 200,000 Canadians of Pakistani origin, established communities across the country provide support and familiarity for newcomers. Additionally, various immigration pathways cater specifically to Pakistani citizens with diverse skills and experiences.

Immigration Pathways for Pakistani Citizens

Choosing the right immigration pathway is crucial for your success when planning your move to Canada. Here's an in-depth look at several options, both temporary and permanent, to help you determine the best fit for your needs and goals:

Permanent Residence Pathways

Express Entry:

  1. Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP): Ideal for skilled workers with foreign work experience, strong education, and language proficiency in English or French.
  2. Canadian Experience Class (CEC): Designed for individuals with at least one year of skilled work experience gained while in Canada.
  3. Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP): Targets skilled tradespersons with qualifications in eligible occupations.

Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs):

  1. Enhanced PNPs: These align with the Express Entry system, offering you an additional 600 points towards your CRS score if you receive a provincial nomination.
  2. Base PNPs: These operate independently of Express Entry and provide a direct route to permanent residency if you meet provincial eligibility requirements.

Other Federal Programs:

  1. Atlantic Immigration Program (AIP): Aims to attract skilled workers and international graduates to Atlantic Canada (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador).
  2. Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP): Facilitates immigration for skilled workers who want to settle in participating rural communities.
  3. Caregiver Programs: Offer pathways for experienced caregivers to gain permanent residency.
  4. Agri-Food Programs: Dedicated pathways for those with skills in the agriculture and agri-food sectors.

Temporary Residence Pathways (Can Lead to Permanent Residency)

Study in Canada:

  1. Direct Student Stream (SDS): Provides expedited study permit processing for Pakistani students.
  2. Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP): Allows international graduates to gain valuable Canadian work experience, potentially increasing their eligibility for permanent residency programs.

Work in Canada:

  1. Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP): Requires a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) from the employer showing the need to hire a foreign worker.
  2. International Mobility Program (IMP): Includes work permits that don't require an LMIA, such as:

Intra-Company Transfers: For employees of multinational companies transferring to Canadian branches.

Global Talent Stream: Expedites work permits for highly skilled workers in in-demand tech occupations.

Important Considerations:

  1. Eligibility: Meticulously research the eligibility criteria for each program before applying to ensure you meet the requirements.
  2. Points System: Many pathways, especially Express Entry, rely on points systems. Understand how points are awarded to maximize your chances.
  3. Provincial Opportunities: Explore provincial programs that align with your skills and potentially offer a smoother path to permanent residency.
  4. Temporary to Permanent: Many temporary pathways can lead to a permanent resident status over time.

Eligibility Requirements for Immigrating to Canada as a Pakistani Citizen

The specific eligibility requirements for immigrating to Canada will vary depending on the chosen pathway. However, some general criteria apply across most programs:

Essential Requirements:

  1. Age: Most economic immigration programs have minimum and maximum age restrictions.
  2. Education: You'll need to demonstrate sufficient educational qualifications, often through transcripts and diplomas. Depending on the program, specific educational attainment might be necessary.
  3. Work Experience: A minimum level of relevant work experience, usually with proof of employment, is required for many pathways.
  4. Language Proficiency: You must demonstrate proficiency in either English or French through standardized language tests like IELTS or TEF. The required levels vary based on the program and immigration stream.
  5. Medical Examination: Applicants must undergo a medical examination conducted by an approved physician to determine your health and ensure you won't pose a public health risk in Canada.
  6. Financial Resources: You'll need to show adequate funds to support yourself and your dependents upon arrival in Canada. This typically involves providing proof of sufficient funds through bank statements or financial documents.

Program-Specific Requirements:

Each pathway might have additional requirements. Here are some examples:

  1. Express Entry: Requires meeting the minimum CRS point threshold based on factors like age, education, language proficiency, and work experience.
  2. Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs): Each province has its specific eligibility criteria, sometimes including additional documents or specific work experience requirements.
  3. Atlantic Immigration Program (AIP): May require a job offer from an employer in an Atlantic province and participation in their specific program streams.
  4. Study Permit: Must be accepted by a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) and meet program-specific requirements.
  5. Work Permit: Typically requires a valid job offer from a Canadian employer, and in some cases, a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).

Additional Considerations:

  1. Criminal Record: If you have a criminal record, it may impact your eligibility to immigrate. You may need to undergo additional security checks or obtain special authorization.
  2. Family Sponsorship: If sponsored by family members already residing in Canada, specific requirements might apply depending on their relationship to you.

Steps to Migrate to Canada as a Pakistani Citizen in 2024

  1. Explore & Research:

Understand various immigration pathways (Express Entry, PNPs, etc.).

Evaluate your eligibility based on qualifications and program requirements.

Consider seeking professional guidance from immigration consultants.

  1. Prepare & Organize:

Choose your immigration pathway based on your goals and eligibility.

Start gathering required documents (education transcripts, work references, etc.).

Take language tests (IELTS, CELPIP, TEF) to meet required scores.

Obtain an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) if needed.

Explore job opportunities if your pathway demands a Canadian job offer.

  1. Apply & Wait:

Create online profiles (Express Entry, etc.) if applicable.

Complete application forms accurately, attaching all supporting documents.

Submit your application and pay processing fees.

Be patient as processing times vary depending on the chosen program.

Be prepared for background checks, medical exams, and potential interviews.

  1. Decision & Next Steps:

Receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) if applying via Express Entry.

Submit a full application if your initial application is approved.

Finalize your move by arranging housing, employment, and other necessities.

Tips for Successful Immigration to Canada

  1. Start Early, Be Prepared: Immigration processes can be lengthy and often require meticulous preparation. Begin early to gather documents, complete tests, and meet potential deadlines comfortably.
  2. Understand Requirements Thoroughly: Invest time in thoroughly understanding the eligibility criteria, documentation requirements, and processes of your chosen program. Mistakes can lead to delays or rejection.
  3. Invest in Language Skills: English or French fluency is crucial. Aim for the highest possible scores on language tests to boost your eligibility, especially through Express Entry.
  4. Professional Assistance: Immigration consultants and lawyers offer invaluable guidance. Consider seeking their expertise for personalized assessment and to navigate the complex process.
  5. Leverage Online Resources: Familiarize yourself with the official Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website for up-to-date information and resources.
  6. Explore Provincial Options: Don't limit yourself to only federal programs. Research Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) which might have less competitive requirements or align better with your skills.
  7. Network: Connect with other Pakistani immigrants in Canada or online communities for support, advice, and local insights.
  8. Prepare for Adaptation: Moving to a new country requires adaptability. Be open to learning about Canadian culture, the employment landscape, and start building networks that offer support.
  9. Job Search (If Applicable): Actively search for Canadian job opportunities relevant to your field and secure an offer for pathways that demand it. Employers in Canada prioritize language skills and relevant Canadian experience.
  10. Focus on Integration: Once your move is finalized, focus on integration. Engage in community activities, network with professionals in your field, and contribute to your new home.

Additional Considerations:

  1. Be Honest and Transparent: Always provide accurate information in your application. Any misrepresentation can lead to serious consequences.
  2. Manage Expectations: Immigration is a process, not an overnight event. Remain patient and resilient during waiting periods.
  3. Celebrate Small Wins: Acknowledge your progress along the way to stay motivated and positive.


Immigrating to Canada as a Pakistani citizen can be a fulfilling journey. By understanding Canada's immigration plan, exploring the available pathways, and carefully preparing your application, you can increase your chances of successfully achieving your Canadian dream. Remember, professional guidance from immigration consultants can be valuable throughout this process.

Canada Calling? We Can Help!

Thinking about immigrating to Canada from Pakistan? Pelican Migration Consultants, a trusted immigration consultants in Dubai, can make your dream a reality. Our team of experts understands the intricacies of Canadian immigration for Pakistani citizens, including popular programs like Express Entry and Provincial Nominee Programs.

Don't navigate the process alone. We offer:

  1. Free consultation: Discuss your goals and explore your options.
  2. Eligibility assessment: See if you qualify for Canadian immigration.
  3. Program selection: Find the best path for your unique situation.
  4. Application guidance: Ensure a smooth and error-free process.
  5. Increased success rate: Benefit from our expertise and proven track record.

Start your Canadian journey with confidence. Contact Pelican Migration Consultants today!