Are you interested in moving to Canada? There have been many speculations about whether the Express Entry system is still doling out Invitations to Apply (ITAs) for permanent residency and whether or not the pandemic has had an effect on Canadian immigration. It may surprise you to know that the Canadian government has not stopped processing visas for Canada. In fact, it’s quite the contrary.
Now more than ever, Canada is in need of skilled foreign workers, especially those in essential jobs, to help alleviate the pressure on the Canadian labour market, which has been under tremendous strain even before the pandemic hit.
Canada aims to invite more than 1 million people to become permanent residents by 2023. 411,000 ITAs are set to be issued in 2022, with a further 10,000 to be added to the quota in 2023. Of these annual targets, 110,500 invitations have been reserved for Express Entry applicants in 2022, and 113,750 in 2023.
Ready to find out how to be one in a million getting Express Entry to Canada in 2022 and beyond?
Let’s take a closer look at this incredible immigration system and how it has managed to invite applicants to apply for permanent residency in as little as 6 months!
Canada’s Express Entry system has been changing lives since 2015. It was originally designed to help make the application process faster, more accessible and more efficient for those applying for Permanent Residency (PR) in Canada, and has been more than successful in doing so.
To date, 106,927 applicants have already received ITAs for PR in 2021, which means that Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is well on its way to meeting its target!
So How Does the Express Entry System Work?
The Express Entry system manages 3 federal immigration programs, each focusing on different levels of skill, work experience and occupations. These 3 programs are issuing visas for Canada through the Express Entry system:
- The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)
- The Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)
- The Canadian Experience Class (CEC)
1. The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)
The Federal Skilled Worker Program helps highly skilled workers like doctors, nurses and candidates in managerial roles apply for Canadian permanent residency.
To qualify for Express Entry to Canada through the FSWP, you will first go through an initial “screening” where factors such as your age, education and qualifications, work experience and language skills will be assessed. To be considered eligible, you will need to score at least 67 out of a possible 100 points.
If eligible, you will then be assessed according to the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). Applicants will need to create an Express Entry profile and can score a maximum of 1,200 points based on the same factors mentioned previously. Once assessed, they will receive a CRS score before their profile is entered into the draw pool with other applicants.
Express Entry draws take place regularly every 2 weeks. Those who score higher than or the same amount as the CRS cut-off score, will receive invitations to apply for permanent residency in Canada.
2. The Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)
The Federal Skilled Trades Program is aimed at experienced and skilled foreign trade workers like electricians, plumbers and mechanics who want to apply for Canadian PR status. FSTP applicants will need to have at least 2 years of work experience in the past 5 years as well as either have a job offer in Canada or have a provincial, territorial or federal certification of qualification.
3. The Canadian Experience Class (CEC)
The Canadian Experience Class is for those who have gained at least 1 year of highly-skilled work experience in Canada in the last 3 years. For your work experience to be considered eligible under this program you would need to have obtained Canadian work experience on a temporary foreign work permit.
Still not sure which program you’re eligible for? Take a look at our table of comparison of the eligibility requirements between the 3 Express Entry programs, below:
|Eligibility Comparison for Express Entry Programs|
|Eligibility criteria||Federal Skilled Worker Program||Federal Skilled Trades Program||Canadian Experience Class|
|Language skills||English or French skills – CLB 7||English or French skills
CLB 5 for speaking and listening
CLB 4 for reading and writing
|English or French skills
CLB 7 if your NOC is 0 or A
CLB 5 if your NOC is B
|Type/Level of work experience||Canadian or foreign experience in 1 of these NOCs 0; A; B||Canadian or foreign experience in a skilled trade under key groups of NOC B||Canadian or foreign experience in 1 of these NOCs 0; A; B
|Amount of work experience||One year continuous within the last 10 years (combination of part-time, full-time or more than 1 job in your primary occupation||Two years within last 5 years (either combination of full-time or part-time work)||One year in Canada in the last 3 years (either combination of full-time or part-time work)|
|Job offer||Not required.
But you can get selection criteria (FSW) points for having a valid job offer
A valid job offer of full-time employment for a total period of at least 1 year or
a certificate of qualification in that skilled trade issued by a Canadian provincial, territorial or federal authority
|Education||Secondary education required.
You can get more selection criteria (FSW) points for your post-secondary education.
|Not required.||Not required.|
Ready to Start Your Move to Canada?
How Much Does it Cost to Get Express Entry to Canada?
processing fee costs $825 while the permanent residence fee costs $500, bringing the total cost to $1,325. If your spouse is applying with you, they will need to pay the same amount ($1,325) and the cost for a dependent child is $225.
How Long Does Canada’s Express Entry Take?
On average, Express Entry applications take around 6 months to process, however it also depends on how long it takes for your profile to be selected from the draw pool. Those with the highest score are chosen to apply for PR in Canada, which is why having the highest possible CRS score is so important. One of the greatest advantages of applying for a visa for Canada through the Express Entry system is that you can always improve your CRS score even after you have submitted your profile, which is valid for up to 24 months.
What CRS Score is Needed for Canada’s Express Entry System?
CRS scores selected for Canada PR application have ranged anywhere from 357 to 813, in 2021. The average score over all draws so far in 2021 is about 589. However, due to the competitive nature of the draw, it is recommended to score as high as possible as your score will be compared to those in your particular draw pool.
Although Canada’s Express Entry system is currently facing a backlog in processing applications, it seems that progress is being made. It has decreased by 8,500 over the past month (September 3 – October 27, 2021) bringing the total backlog of Express Entry applications to 99,968 as of October 27, 2021.
In order to keep its track record of 6 months or less visa processing, the IRCC has stated that it will need to cut program processing to provincial applicants only until further notice. So what does this mean for Express Entry applicants in 2022? At this point, the immigration strategy is yet to be finalized although this does not mean there is no hope for applicants.
Now is the time to get your application submitted so that when the Express Entry System opens to All Category draws, your profile will be in line to qualify for permanent residency.
Ready to make your move to Canada? Find out if you qualify to get Express Entry to Canada in 2022 with the help of our immigration professionals at canadamigration.org