It has been nearly a full year since Canada held its last all-program Express Entry draw.
Canada invited 746 Express Entry candidates to apply for permanent residence on December 22.
Invited candidates had previously received a nomination through a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP), adding 600 points to their base human capital score. As a result, the minimum cut-off for this draw was 720.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has only been holding PNP draws since September—this is now the eighth in a row. According to an internal briefing memo, IRCC has paused CEC invitations to catch up on its backlog. In the memo, the department has said it wants to cut Express Entry backlogs in half before it considers inviting candidates from other programs.
In the previous PNP draw, IRCC invited a record-breaking 1,032 PNP candidates to apply. The minimum score in that draw was 698.
One year without all-program draw
It has been one year since Canada held an Express Entry draw that includes candidates from all programs. IRCC has not invited Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) nor Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) candidates since December 23, 2020.
Throughout the year, IRCC has only held Express Entry draws that target candidates from the PNP and Canadian Experience Class (CEC).
The strategy was supposed to allow IRCC to focus on admitting immigration candidates who were likely already in the country. Candidates who were applying for Canadian immigration from abroad were not allowed to cross the border for the purpose of activating their permanent residency status until June.
However, an IRCC briefing note reveals that focusing on inland candidates, as well as creating the Temporary Residence to Permanent Residence (TR to PR) pathway created a large backlog of candidates.
While announcing that the Atlantic Immigration Pilot would become a permanent program in 2022, Immigration Minister Sean Fraser said Canada would move back to admitting a mix of immigrants from both in Canada and abroad.
“I anticipate as we go forward we are going to have a healthy mix of people who are here with some experience in Canada now and other employees who may not yet be here that will come to Canada through a program such as the Atlantic Immigration Pilot, as the public health situation allows,” Fraser told reporters.
Source: CIC News