On January 18, 2023, Canada held the second draw for its Express Entry system for the year.
A Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score of 490 or higher is required for candidates to get an invitation from Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
No program was specified, which means that individuals who met the requirements were invited from the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), and the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP). Express Entry serves as the umbrella organization for all of these different initiatives.
The draw surprised everyone because it constituted the second round of invites for Express Entry in consecutive weeks. The IRCC had only recently completed holding a draw on Wednesday, January 11, inviting 5,500 applications. The CRS cut-off score for the draw a week ago was 507.
This indicates that the CRS cut-off score has decreased by 17 points between draws. Also, for this draw, IRCC initially listed the score as 507, but it has since been amended to reflect the correct score of 490. The draw that took place the week before last was the first one since the draw on November 23, 2022.
Draws for Express Entry takes place typically once every two weeks, on Wednesdays most of the time. The IRCC has not explained why there was a break in drawing winners during this period.
Nevertheless, the fact that draws has been held in consecutive weeks to begin 2023 demonstrates IRCC’s aim to welcome more immigrants with specialized skills to Canada in this calendar year.
The 11,000 ITAs that have already been distributed make the commencement of Express Entry the quickest ever since the program was introduced in 2015. This breaks the previous record of 10,000 ITAs distributed in January 2021.
The majority of successful candidates can expect to receive their permanent residence within just six months if they apply through the Express Entry system. This is the quickest service level available among Canada’s more than one hundred skilled immigration options.
The quick start to the year for Express Entry is just the beginning of what is anticipated to be a very active year for the primary channel for skilled immigrants offered by IRCC.
IRCC creating categories for targeted Express Entry draws
The Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRCC) has been hard developing new draw categories for applicants in Express Entry programs since Bill C-19 was given royal assent in June last year.
This is a significant change from the standard practice, which consists of admitting applicants based purely on their high scores in the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS).
The most recent move that IRCC has taken was to complete a round of consultations with members of the public and various stakeholders better to understand the most severe labor shortages in Canada.
Regardless of what category they fall into, all candidates must be qualified to submit an application using the Express Entry application management program currently in place.
The Minister will decide on the categories, and those decisions will be made public before invitations are sent out.
The various categories for which targeted drawings are possible
The categories will be determined by the features of the candidates, such as their occupations, levels of education, years of work experience, and linguistic capabilities.
According to Canada’s Minister of Immigration, this will help support Canada’s economic priorities by encouraging individuals better suited to address pressing needs in Canada’s labor force.
There is a possibility that will be held to choose candidates for Express Entry with specialized work experience pertinent to a sector of the workforce experiencing a high demand for workers.
There is also the possibility that Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will establish new categories to assist international students currently studying in Canada in their pursuit of becoming permanent residents through the Express Entry system.
This would be particularly advantageous if the student obtained a degree or diploma in a high-demand field from a Designated Learning Institution.
For the same reasons, temporary residents are getting some consideration as a category. It has been discovered that people who have had temporary work experience in Canada have a stronger ability to integrate into the Canadian labor market and are better prepared to transfer their talents when necessary.
As the government works to fulfill its mandate to strengthen Canada’s bilingual character and fill labor gaps in community members where speaking French is necessary for an occupation, skilled immigrants and French-speaking immigrants may also have an advantage when applying for an ITA. This could be the case because of the government’s efforts to deliver on its mandate.
What is Express Entry?
The Canadian Experience Class (CEC), the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), and the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) are the three immigration programs that are managed by the application management system known as Express Entry in Canada (FSTP).
Applicants for the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) who are already part of the Express Entry pool meet the requirements for participation in at least one of these programs.
The Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), which Express Entry uses, assigns candidates’ profiles a ranking based on a point system. Candidates who achieve the highest scores are granted an Invitation to Apply (ITA), which allows them to apply for permanent residency.
After the candidate has submitted their application, an officer from the IRCC will review it and decide whether or not they are approved. When this is finished, if the candidate is successful, they will be considered a permanent citizen of Canada. They will be one step closer to becoming a resident of Canada.
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