Canada touches new milestone, issuing invitations to 44,124 immigrants in the first quarter of 2021. It is the maximum number of invitations issued in any quarter.
Express Entry is the popular immigration system offering Canadian permanent residence, introduced by the federal government in January 2015 to substitute the old “first come, first served” process. It is an online system developed to manage Canada’s immigration applications admittance.
It is the primary way to welcome economic class immigrants. The candidates need to meet the eligibility criteria of one of the three skilled worker programs managed under Express Entry.
Qualified aspirants have to upload their profiles onto the Canadian government’s website and earn a Comprehensive Ranking System score based on their human capital characteristics such as age, education, language skills, and work experience.
Applicants’ profiles are ranked against each other conforming to a points-based system called the Comprehensive Ranking System. The top-ranked candidates will be considered for an invitation to apply for PR in Canada. Eligible candidates who get an invitation to apply (ITA) need to quickly submit a full application and payment processing fees, without a delay of 90-days.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) holds draws every two weeks and invites applicants with the highest CRS scores but it has temporarily withdrawn from this approach due to the pandemic. Presently, IRCC is centering on inviting Express Entry applicants residing in Canada during the pandemic.
Despite travel restrictions amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Canada is still holding to Express Entry draws. The majority of foreign nationals are barred from entering Canada at this time, but there are many exemptions to the travel ban. There are a few exceptional exemptions listed here such as, Canadian citizens and Canadian permanent residents; immediate family members of Canadian citizens and Canadian permanent residents who are traveling to Canada for mandatory reasons, irregular workers who possess a valid work permit or who are authorized for a work permit but have not yet been issued the work permit or international students attending a Designated Learning Institution.
As a way out, IRCC has shifted to program-specific draws. It would normally consider all candidates in its Express Entry draws before the pandemic, it has been considering certain candidates who are either being invited due to provincial labor market requirements or since the candidates are living in Canada at the moment. The group remarkably influenced by this policy shift are applicants eligible under the Federal Skilled Worker Program, who made up the majority of Express Entry candidates who became permanent residents before the pandemic.
In the first quarter of 2021, IRCC has been fluctuating between Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) and Canadian Experience Class (CEC) express entry draws. Canada’s Provincial Nominee Program plays an important role in terms of economic immigration. This program enables engaging Canadian provinces and territories to nominate eligible immigration aspirants who balance local workforce needs for permanent residence. Canada grasps ten Express Entry draws in the initial quarter. Six of them were PNP and four of them only invited CEC candidates. A total of 41,708 went to CEC applicants and 2,416 went to PNP applicants.
Every province or territory conducts a PNP except for Nunavut and Quebec.
The provinces seem to welcome skilled workers to encourage economic development. The CEC is a successful immigration pathway for those who studied or worked in Canada. Aspirants need to have at least one year of Canadian work experience and meet minimum language requirements.
The big express entry draws open on February 13, 2021
The big express entry draws open on February 13, 2021.
IRCC has opened the biggest Express Entry draw ever to invite a record 27,332 to apply for a Canadian PR visa as compare to its second-largest Express Entry draws, IRCC invited just 5,000 applicants.
The Express Entry is unique in different ways. The country invites a record 27,332 to apply for a Canadian PR visa and, then the CRS score is the lowest ever, which is just 75 points. CRS cut-offs were ordinarily well over 400 before this draw.
The Covid 19 pandemic is a reason for this exceptional draw.
IRCC sought to welcome 341,000 new immigrants in 2020 until the pandemic resulted in the most uncertain year for Canadian immigration since 1998
To compensate, IRCC announced the most challenging immigration levels targets in Canadian records.
Canada is anticipating to welcome a tremendous 401,000 new permanent residents in 2021 with Express Entry set to account for about one-fourth of new immigrants.
Acknowledging the constant impact of the pandemic on immigration, IRCC has essentially focused on inviting CEC applicants. IRCC says about 90 percent of CEC applicants are likely already in Canada.
Many PNP streams are associated with the federal Express Entry scheme indicating, the provinces and territories use foreign national applicants who have profiles in the Express Entry pool to apply for a provincial nomination.
This profits the applicant as a provincial nomination combines a total of 600 CRS points to their score. This assures acceptance of an invitation to apply in the coming Express Entry draw.
Strategies for the second quarter
IRCC hit off the second quarter of 2021 as Canada invited 5,000 Express Entry candidates to apply for permanent residence on April 01.
IRCC is supposed to continue to hold program-specific CEC and PNP draws over the next few months. Though IRCC returned to all-program draws in the next half of 2020, and it may do the same against this year.
The justification would be tempting as many PNP and CEC candidates in the first six months of the year will enable IRCC to settle as many of these candidates as possible by the end of 2021 and support its 401,000 immigrant goals for the year.
Following the February 13 Express Entry draw, IRCC looks forward to welcoming candidates currently abroad into Canada once the calamitous pandemic is under control.
Canada aims to vaccinate the bulk of its population by the summer recognition to significant anticipated shipments of COVID-19 vaccines.