2022: Express Entry year in review

Edana Robitaille
Published: December 26, 2022

The past year has been a unique one for Canada’s Express Entry application management system. The resumption of all-program draws, after an 18-month pause that began in December 2020, has allowed Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to work towards,  pre-pandemic targets of Express Entry invitations.

Over the year, the department has been working towards clearing the backlog of applications and raising immigration targets for the coming years.

Express Entry application management system manages applications for skilled workers, or economic class immigrants, who wish to come to Canada through a Federal High Skilled immigration program.

Get a Free Express Entry Assessment

If a candidate meets Express Entry program criteria, they may gather the necessary supporting documentation and upload a profile to the IRCC website. They will then be assigned a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score, which is used to rank all candidates in the application pool against each other. Those with the highest scores are more likely to receive an Invitation To Apply (ITA) for permanent residence.

Number of ITAs

Ministerial instructions show that over the 23 draws in 2022, there were 46,538 ITAs issued to Express Entry candidates. This number includes draws between January and July, which were exclusively for candidates in Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs). The total ITAs for just all-program draws, which began in July and spanned the rest of the year, was 35,750.

Last April, Immigration Minister Sean Fraser announced that all-program Express Entry draws would resume in July this year. The first draw took place on July 6 and a total of 1,500 candidates were invited.

The overall number of ITAs is lower than it has been in the past due to the pause in draws over the first six months of the year. The July 6 draw was the smallest. Over the following ten draws, the number increased by increments of either 250 or 500 candidates each time until reaching the highest number of ITAs on October 26, November 9 and 23 with 4,750 candidates invited in each draw.

CRS scores

The most recent Express Entry draw saw the lowest minimum Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score at 491.

Since draws started again, there has been a decline of 66 points over ten draws. The CRS score for the first draw in July was 557.

After draws resumed on July 6, each subsequent draw saw a drop in the minimum score. The first several draws saw declines of between six to eight points. The last three draws saw the smallest drops of between four to two points.

Stage set for Express Entry changes in 2023

Updated NOC

On November 16, IRCC officially made the transition from NOC 2016 to NOC 2021.

Under NOC 2016, Express Entry candidates required work experience classified under NOC skill types 0, A or B. IRCC’s shift to NOC 2021 has shifted to the Training, Education, Experience and Responsibilities (TEER) system.

The intent of the new system is to help better understand a candidate's qualifications and experience in an occupation to ensure they can integrate more easily into Canada’s labour force. Also, under the TEER system, there are 16 occupations newly eligible for Express Entry programs.

Targeted draws

Last June, Bill C-19 received Royal Assent in Canada’s Parliament. Under the Bill, the immigration minister now has the authority to invite Express Entry candidates based on an economic need instead of their CRS score as the main criteria.

The minister said although Express Entry already gives Canada a competitive advantage, there is room for improvement.

“Where [the Express Entry system] could be improved is at present if there are particular challenges that your economy is facing, it might be facing in the long term. We don’t have the ability to tailor the invitations to apply to the Express Entry system to meet those in-demand skills or qualifications,” Fraser said.

IRCC is expected to begin holding draws targeted toward specific occupations in spring 2023.

Get a Free Express Entry Assessment

© CIC News All Rights Reserved. Visit CanadaVisa.com to discover your Canadian immigration options.

Share this article
Share your voice
Did you find this article helpful?
Thank you for your feedback.
Subscribe to our newsletter
Did you find this article helpful?
Please provide a response
Thank you for your helpful feedback
Please contact us if you would like to share additional feedback, have a question, or would like Canadian immigration assistance.
  • Do you need Canadian immigration assistance? Contact the Contact Cohen Immigration Law firm by completing our form
  • Send us your feedback or your non-legal assistance questions by emailing us at media@canadavisa.com
Related articles
Five things to do in your first week as an international student in Canada
A diverse group of cheerful female college students sitting in front of a university building, talking, smiling
Returning to Canada: Immigration Checklist and best practices
A blank passport and model airplane placed on top of a permit. Read on your guide to returning to Canada after the holidays.
Ontario, British Columbia, and Manitoba invite candidates in this week’s PNP results
Ontario, BC and Manitoba have nominated candidates for PNPs this week.
Canada extending international student off-campus work hours policy until April 2024
Group of multiethnic classmates in casual clothes smiling and analyzing data on netbook while gathering near table and working on project in university library
Top Stories
Five things to do in your first week as an international student in Canada
Returning to Canada: Immigration Checklist and best practices
Ontario, British Columbia, and Manitoba invite candidates in this week’s PNP results
Join our free newsletter. Get Canada's top immigration stories delivered to your inbox.
More in Provinces
Ontario, British Columbia, and Manitoba invite candidates in this week’s PNP results
Ontario, BC and Manitoba have nominated candidates for PNPs this week.
Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec, Manitoba, and PEI invite candidates in latest provincial immigration draw results
Five provinces have invited candidates in the most recent provincial immigration draws.
What the changes to Alberta’s healthcare delivery system mean for newcomers across the province
Alberta province of Canada flag on flagpole textile cloth fabric waving on the top sunrise mist fog
New immigration pilots and policy changes come into effect for Quebec
A couple looks down Mt. Tremblant in Quebec. New changes have come to Quebec's immigration system.
Link copied to clipboard