Canada held an Express Entry draw on October 2, issuing a total of 3,900 invitations to apply for Canadian permanent residence.
Candidates in the Express Entry pool needed a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score of 464 and above to be selected in this round.
Today’s draw was an increase of 300 Invitations to Apply (ITAs) over the previous draw on September 18. The last time Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) invited 3,900 Express Entry candidates to apply for Canadian permanent residence was on January 23, 2019.
The Express Entry system is Canada’s main source of skilled foreign workers. Eligible candidates enter the Express Entry pool and are issued a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score based on their age, education, skilled work experience and proficiency in English or French, among other factors.
A job offer is not required to enter or be selected from the Express Entry pool.
The highest-ranked candidates are invited to apply for Canadian permanent residence during regular draws from the pool.
In order to enter the Express Entry pool, candidates must first meet the eligibility requirements for one of Canada’s three Federal High Skilled economic-class immigration categories —the Federal Skilled Worker Class, Federal Skilled Trades Class, and Canadian Experience Class.
Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) applied a tie break rule in the October 2 draw; candidates had to have submitted their profiles before September 20, 2019, at 15:05:04 UTC. This means that all candidates with CRS scores above 464, as well as those with scores of 464 who entered their profile in the Express Entry pool before this date and time, received an ITA.
The 3,900 ITAs issued in today’s draw brought the total number of invitations issued in 2019 to 67,300.
If maintained over the final quarter of 2019, the increased draw size could help IRCC surpass its single-year ITA record of 89,800 invitations that was set last year.
It is possible that IRCC will break this record given Canada’s higher admissions targets for Express Entry in 2019 and 2020.
Draws are typically held two weeks apart and this round was no exception.
In the past, scores have gone up after a long pause between draws, while draws held at shorter intervals, like today’s draw, have helped to reduce the CRS cut-off score.
This year has been a busy and innovative year for Canada’s provincial nominee programs.
The higher cut-off score in today’s draw may reflect a larger number of Express Entry candidates with a provincial nomination, which rewards candidates with an additional 600 CRS points.
Since the last Express Entry draw on September 18, there have been a number of provincial selection rounds that targeted Express Entry candidates.
British Columbia’s latest draw invited 402 candidates to apply for a provincial nomination on October 1; 109 invitations of those were sent to people with Express Entry profiles.
Saskatchewan invited 404 candidates to apply for a provincial nomination on September 26.
Manitoba also held a draw inviting 15 Express Entry candidates to apply for a provincial nomination on September 25.
Alberta held a draw aligned with Express Entry on September 18, inviting candidates with CRS scores of 350 and up. Earlier this month, on September 11, Alberta issued invitations to candidates with scores as low as 302.
Nova Scotia selected 22 carpenters out of the Express Entry pool through the Nova Scotia Labour Market Priorities Stream.
Prince Edward Island issued 122 invitations through its Express Entry aligned program, as well as its Labour Impact and Business Work Permit streams. The province did not provide a breakdown of how many were Express Entry, nor what the score requirement was.
The first step towards pursuing many of Canada’s Express Entry aligned provincial nomination streams is to submit an Express Entry profile.
The following are hypothetical examples of candidates who would have obtained an ITA in the October 2 draw:
Aretha is 32, has a master’s degree and has been working as a teacher for four years. She has an advanced English language proficiency and has never worked or studied in Canada. Her CRS score of 465 would have been high enough to obtain an ITA during the October 2 Express Entry draw.
Amal and Lena are 31 and 30 respectively and each holds a bachelor’s degree and is working as IT analysts for four years. Amal has an advanced English language proficiency and an intermediate French language proficiency. Lena speaks English at an intermediate level. They entered the pool with Amal as the principal applicant. Their CRS score of 467 would have been high enough to obtain an ITA during the October 2 Express Entry draw.
“It’s always good to see IRCC increase the draw size and 3,900 ITAs is impressive,” said David Cohen, senior partner with the Campbell, Cohen Canadian immigration law firm in Montreal.
“While it didn’t have the effect of lowering the CRS cut-off in this draw, it could still in later draws this quarter if IRCC maintains draws of this magnitude at regular intervals.”
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