After months of inaction, Alberta has now released details of a second draw held in January.
On January 28, the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP) issued 100 invitations to Express Entry candidates, who had scores of at least 360 on the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). These invited candidates can now apply for a provincial nomination under the Alberta Express Entry Stream.
Express Entry is Canada’s application management system for the three Federal High Skilled immigration pathways, which include the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Federal Skilled Trades Program, and the Canadian Experience Class.
Eligible immigration candidates are given a score based on the CRS. Points are awarded for factors that the government has determined will help a prospective immigrant succeed in Canada’s labour market. These factors include a candidate’s age, education, work experience, language ability in English or French, and others.
About every two weeks, Canada’s immigration department, IRCC, holds Express Entry draws inviting candidates to apply for immigration. The highest-scoring candidates receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for Canadian permanent residence. If they are approved, they receive a Confirmation of Permanent Residence and their final step is to make their landing in Canada. After that they are officially permanent residents.
If the candidates who received an invitation from Alberta receive the provincial nomination, they will get an automatic 600 CRS points added to their score. Given that most Express Entry draws have minimum CRS cutoffs in the 400s, the additional points effectively guarantee that provincial nominees will receive an ITA in a subsequent Express Entry round of invitation.
Candidates in the Express Entry system have the opportunity to receive an invitation to apply for a provincial nomination from Alberta, as well as other provinces with Express Entry-aligned PNPs. They need to have work experience in an eligible occupation that supports the province’s economic development and diversification priorities.
The AINP provides a list of occupations that they will not consider. Any other occupation may be considered.
On November 1, 2020, the federal government increased the number of occupations that are not eligible to apply for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) in Alberta. However, candidates who received a Notification of Interest on or after November 1, 2020 can be selected through the Alberta Express Entry Stream, even if they are working in an occupation that the federal government will not process an LMIA for.
Alberta was allowed to issue 6,250 nomination certificates in 2020. However, due to COVID-19, Alberta reduced their allocation to 4,000 nominations. All of these nominations were issued by June 2020. This is why there were no draws for the second half of the year.
The number of provincial nominations allocated to Alberta for 2021 has not yet been disclosed.
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