Since 6 July, Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has been having its fifth all-program Express Entry draw.
IRCC provided 2,750 Invitations To Apply (ITA) and the minimum Comprehensive Ranking System score (CRS) was 516. Express Entry is one of Canada’s primary immigration pathways for competent newcomers.
The IRCC halted all-program Express Entry draws for more than 18 months, starting in December 2020. During this time, only applicants that were eligible for permanent residence under the CEC or the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) were allowed to apply. But, CEC draws were also halted in September 2021.
The reason for pausing the draws was due to an excessive number of permanent residence applications submitted amidst the global COVID-19 pandemic. At that time, Canada’s borders were closed shut and travel guidelines were changing frequently.
Since all-program draws continued on July 6, this draw marks the biggest increase in ITA’s, up by 500. Until the latest draw, the number of applicants receiving ITAs has been increasing by exactly 250 with each draw. For instance, the first July draw accepted 1,500 candidates, the second 1,750 and so on. There has also been a slow decrease in the lowest CRS score, which has lost between eight or nine points per draw. The first minimum CRS score was 557.
What Is Express Entry?
Express Entry is the management system for applications of three Canadian immigration programs:
- The Canadian Experience Class (CEC);
- The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)
- The Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)
The applicants for the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) in the Express Entry group are already qualified for one of these programs at least.
Express Entry utilizes a points-based system, the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), to rank applicants’ profiles. The top-scoring applicants get an Invitation to Apply (ITA) and can then file for permanent residency.
After the applicant has applied, an IRCC officer analyzes the application and makes a decision. The officer will ask for biometrics and may schedule an interview or request more documentation. Once this process is complete, if accepted, the applicant is now a permanent resident of Canada and close to becoming a Canadian citizen.
What Are The Future Plans For IRCC?
IRCC has goals to make a big change to Express Entry in 2023 that would give the department authority to issue ITAs aimed at people with a certain education, work experience or language ability groups it deems fit to be well-positioned to support Canada’s economy and workforce. Meaning that CRS scores could become less important in some future draws.
In June, Immigration Minister Sean Fraser explained the reason for this suggestion while on stage at Collision, a technology conference, saying that if Canada can pinpoint the skills that are required in the next 20 to 30 years, they can bring individuals who have great abilities and make a huge economic impact.
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