On December 10, 2021, Canada announced a fresh batch of invitations to Express Entry candidates. The most recent Express Entry draw targeted those who had received a provincial nomination certificate. Canada invited 1,032 candidates with a minimum CRS score of 698.
Provinces continue to invite foreign workers directly from the Express Entry pool, notwithstanding the suspension of all-program draws. Under the Express Entry procedure, Canada has welcomed nearly 14,000 PNP candidates this year. While Canada suspends all program draws, provinces continue to use the Express Entry pool to pick nominated applicants to satisfy local labour market needs.
Candidates nominated through an Express Entry-aligned nominee scheme earn 600 points added to their CRS score. As a result, the CRS cut-off for PNP-specific withdrawals is often substantially higher than the CRS cut-off for draws for other federal programs.
The lowest-ranking contender had a CRS score of 98 prior to winning a provincial nomination.
Why hasn't Canada held a single Express Entry draw for all programs?
According to data from Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), Canada has a backlog of about 1.8 million immigration applications as of October 27. Travel restrictions during the COVID-19 epidemic are to blame for a large portion of this backlog. In addition, IRCC was delaying application processing since COPR holders could not validate their status throughout most of the outbreak. Furthermore, at the height of the epidemic, 75% of IRCC workers were on leave, contributing to the high backlog and compounding processing delays.
To avoid additional delays, IRCC has revealed in an internal document that the government intends to stop Canadian Experience Class (CEC) and Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) drawings until they have dealt with the massive backlog of applications. Instead, Canada has held Express Entry lotteries only for Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) candidates. This will assist in reducing the number of new applications that IRCC must handle until the backlog is cleared.
IRCC is processing applications faster than ever before because of more efficient processing mechanisms. As Canada continues to accomplish its lofty goals for the year, the post-COVID-19 immigration environment grows more appealing for Express Entry hopefuls.
While Canada continues to run Express Entry draws for Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) applicants, there are several reasons why FSW and CEC candidates should still apply. Provinces are continuing to offer invitations to Express Entry applicants. As a result, you have the potential to be chosen by a province to apply for provincial nomination just by having a profile in the pool.
Furthermore, an all-program Express Entry draw might take place at any time. Therefore, having a profile in the Express Entry pool ensures that you do not lose out on an Invitation to Apply (ITA) in the event of an all-program lottery.
Finally, there are no restrictions on how many times you may enter the Express Entry pool. If you do not receive an invitation within the 12 months of your profile validity, you can re-enter the Express Entry pool for a second opportunity.
Each province has its own nominee program, each with its own set of qualifications along with several criteria to match to apply for a province such as work experience, a job offer, a family member, or education in the province. In addition, some applications may use an Expression of Interest (EOI) mechanism.
Many PNPs also organize draws and encourage people to apply for nominations straight from the Express Entry pool. These draw criteria frequently alter from one draw to the next in response to labour market needs. As a result, simply possessing an Express Entry profile increases your chances of obtaining an invitation to submit for a nomination.
In 2021, Canada hopes to welcome a record-breaking 401,000 immigrants. In addition, Canada intends to target 232,500 economic immigrants as part of this total, which includes a total of 108,500 candidates to be called under the Federal Skilled Workers Program, Federal Skilled Trades Program, and Canadian Experience Class combined with 80,800 candidates under the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP).
So far, Canada has issued 113,685 invitations thus far this year.
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