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Canada's 166th Express Entry draw

Express Entry: 4,500 ITAs issued in new draw

Shelby Thevenot

Michael Schwartz

Mohanad Moetaz

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Canada's 166th Express Entry draw

Canada held its latest Express Entry draw on November 5.

A total of 4,500 invitations went to Express Entry candidates with a minimum Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score requirement of 478.

French-speaking candidates are eligible for more CRS points in this draw. Recently, Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced that French-speaking candidates now get 25 additional points for their language skills, up from 15, and bilingual candidates will now get 50 points, up from 30.

Typically, IRCC holds Express Entry draws every two weeks, but this draw was delayed in order to make the update on all of the affected profiles in the Express Entry pool.

This is the third instance where Canada issued 4,500 invitations at a time, the largest number of invitations issued in one draw.

At the end of October, Canada announced its multi-year immigration levels plan, promising to welcome over 400,000 new permanent residents every year until 2023. More than 100,000 of these new immigrants will come in through Express Entry-managed programs in the Federal High Skilled category.

Express Entry is Canada’s immigration application management system for three federal economic-class programs: Federal Skilled Worker ProgramFederal Skilled Trades Program, and Canadian Experience Class.

Candidates in these programs, as well as some Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) are given a score based on the CRS. Points are awarded depending on a candidates human capital factors such as age, education, work experience, and language ability in English or French.

The highest scoring candidates receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for Canadian permanent residence in an Express Entry invitation round. In today’s draw, Canada invited the top 4,500 candidates to apply for permanent residence.

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In case of a tie between candidates, IRCC applies the tie-breaking rule. So, for this draw, candidates who had a CRS score of 478 or more, needed to have submitted their Express Entry profile before October 26, 2020 at 22:44:19 UTC in order to receive an invitation.

This year, the CRS requirement has typically hovered above 470 for all program draws. The Federal Skilled Trades Program-only draw on August 6 invited trades workers with a CRS of 415, and previous Canadian Experience Class-only draws dipped into the 440s. PNP-only draws have higher requirements because Express Entry candidates who receive a provincial nomination are automatically awarded an additional 600 CRS points. PNPs offer alternative pathways to permanent residence for Express Entry candidates who have a lower CRS score.

The new draw brings the total number of ITAs issued in 2020 to 87,350. This year is shaping up to be a new record-breaking year for Express Entry, as the number of ITAs issued to date is the highest it has ever been.

Who is invited?

The following are hypothetical examples of people who may have been invited in today’s invitation round.

Arun is 29 and a software designer. His wife, Divya, is 27 and a systems analyst. Arun has a bachelor’s degree and Divya has a master’s. Arun has high intermediate proficiency in English (CLB 7) and Divya has lower advanced proficiency (CLB 9). Arun has seven years of work experience and Divya has four years of experience. Divya has received an offer of employment, in Canada, in her field. Divya enters the Express Entry pool as the principal applicant, gaining them a score of 488, sufficient to qualify for today’s draw.

Lilac is 25 and single. She is an electrician by training and holds a two-year trade certificate from a college in her country of origin. She worked for three years there, and then came to Nova Scotia, where she has spent the last two years working at a factory. Lilac tested at level CLB 6 for English in all four levels. Lilac, who holds a provincial certification in her occupation, recently received a provincial nomination from Nova Scotia under its Express Entry stream. Lilac’s initial score is 422, not enough to qualify for today’s draw, but with the provincial nomination she gains 600 points and her score rises 1022, easily allowing her to get an ITA.

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