Canada invited 1,047 Express Entry candidates to apply for Canadian immigration on March 2.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) only invited Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) candidates in the new invitation round. The Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) cut off was 761. Invited candidates now have 60 days to apply for Canadian permanent residence.
In the previous round of invitations, IRCC invited a total of 1,082 PNP candidates to apply for Canadian immigration. It was a record for the number of Express Entry candidates invited in a single round of invitations.
Minister says draws for skilled workers to resume in “near future”
Canada has not held an Express Entry draw for Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) candidates since December 2020, and since September 2021 for Canadian Experience Class (CEC) candidates.
Canadian Immigration Minister Sean Fraser told business leaders in a webinar that IRCC would resume draws for skilled workers “in the near future.”
Although the immigration minister said there was no announcement on when skilled worker draws would resume, he said that Express Entry would start to look more normal in the coming years. According to the 2022-2024 Immigration Levels Plan, Express Entry targets will be cut in half for skilled workers this year, but will return to normal by 2024. These targets may change when Canada releases Immigration Levels Plan 2023-2025 in the fall.
Under the current levels plan, Canada is expecting to bring in 83,500 immigrants through both Express Entry-aligned and base PNP categories in 2022. The new targets are greater than what the government projected in the previous levels plan, which was 81,500 PNP immigrants for 2022, and 83,000 for 2023.
Despite the pause in FSWP and CEC draws, PNP draws continue in record numbers every two weeks. In February alone, IRCC issued 2,145 Invitations to Apply to provincial nominees, almost twice as much as the previous month when 1,428 PNP candidates were invited.