Express Entry is one of the primary avenues in which foreign nationals can move to Canada and become permanent residents. The number of anticipated Express Entry permanent resident admissions under the 2023-2025 Immigration Levels Plan for 2023 is 82,880 out of 465,000, which is around 18%. According to the Immigration Levels Plan, the proportion of Express Entry admissions as a percentage of overall planned permanent resident admissions is set to increase in both 2024 and 2025. Of course, the number of planned permanent resident admissions from Express Entry can change when the next Immigration Levels Plan is released. Even if the number fluctuates, the proportion of planned permanent residents admissions to Canada from Express Entry will likely remain similar based on past trends.
Canada’s Express Entry system consists of several different programs through which foreign nationals can apply to become permanent residents. It is important for potential applicants to be aware of the options available to them, as a potential applicant could be better suited to apply for Express Entry under one program rather than another.
Applications for Express Entry are allocated points and sorted based on their Comprehensive Ranking System score in consideration of information included in the application. The points for the Comprehensive Ranking System score are calculated from six selection factors, which include:
The Federal Skilled Trades Program is available to applicants who work in trades such as:
Applicants under the Federal Skilled Trades Program must have at least two years of full-time work experience in their trade within the last five years in order to apply. Work experience can consist of full-time or part-time work, as long as the number of hours worked totals two full years of experience. Applicants also must have sufficient language skills in English or French to apply. Education can improve an applicant’s rank in the Express Entry pool even though there is no education requirement. Finally, applicants for this program require a valid offer of full time employment for a period of at least a year, or a certificate of qualification in their skilled trade issued by a Canadian provincial, territorial or federal authority in order to apply.
The Federal Skilled Worker Program does not require an applicant to have any Canadian work experience in order to apply. However, there are several requirements that must be fulfilled before an applicant may commence an application, many of which are the same as those that are part of the Federal Skilled Trades Program. The work-related requirements differ slightly from the Federal Skilled Trades Program, as the work experience must be one year of continuous work in the last ten years.
The Canadian Experience Class of Express Entry is available to foreign nationals who have prior Canadian work experience. Applicants under this program must have worked in Canada for at least one year in the previous three years before submitting their application. The year of work experience only counts toward the requirement if it was attained during the time the applicant was a legal temporary resident. The applicant must have skills that qualify them for a manager, professional role, or a skilled trade. Finally, applicants must be at the required language level in writing, reading, listening, and speaking required for their job in order to be considered. The level of necessary language skills depends on the type of job that is being applied for, as certain occupations are deemed to require a higher level of language skills than others.
The Canadian Experience Class has no minimum education level required for an applicant to apply, however, education can help make an application more competitive.
The Provincial Nominee Program allows the provinces and territories of Canada to invite foreign nationals to apply to live in a specific province, rather than applying to Canada in general. The participating provinces each have their own nominee programs which come with unique requirements for applicants to meet in order to apply. The Provincial Nominee Programs allow the provinces and territories to target specific foreign nationals for immigration. If an applicant is selected under a Provincial Nominee Program, the applicant must then apply to the federal government for permanent residence status under one of the above Express Entry programs.
Each year, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada releases an annual report highlighting the Express Entry system. The 2022 report was recently released and contains important insights and statistics about Express Entry. In 2022, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada issued over 46,000 Invitations to Apply to Express Entry Applicants. However, the number of Invitations to apply was much lower than in 2021, when over 114,000 invitations to apply were issued. In 2022, most Invitations to Apply were issued under Provincial Nominee Programs and the Canadian Experience Class.
Canadian work experience was a factor for those who were issued an invitation to apply, as 57% of invitations to apply were issued to applicants who had one or two years of Canadian work experience. This was a larger factor than foreign work experience. Interestingly, the top occupations which were issued invitations to those seeking to apply in the tech sector, specifically as software engineers and designers. There were also a large number of food service supervisors who were issued invitations to apply.
The 2022 Express Entry Year-End Report contains valuable information illustrating how Invitations to Apply are issued and which Comprehensive Ranking System criteria correlate with the issuance of Invitations to Apply. If you are looking to come to Canada through the Express Entry system, it could be worth looking at the report to gauge your chance of being issued an Invitation to Apply and to help understand which factors are the most important.
At Garson Immigration Law, our team is exclusively dedicated to the practice of immigration law. We understand that waiting for your immigration application to be processed can be stressful. Our trusted immigration lawyers can help successfully guide you through the immigration process and find solutions for your individual immigration needs.
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