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March 5, 2023

IRCC invites 667 candidates in Express Entry PNP-only draw

Published on March 1st, 2023 at 01:44pm EST Updated on March 1st, 2023 at 06:39pm EST

IRCC held the sixth Express Entry draw of 2023 today.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) issued invitations to 667 candidates with a minimum Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score of 748.

This was the fourth program-specific draw of 2023 following results of the PNP-only draw on February 15. Three of the program-specific draws have been for the PNP while one has been for the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP).

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Over a month since the last all-program draw

All-program Express Entry draws were paused for 18 months between January 2021 and July 2022 due to border closures and restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. All draws in 2022 were all-program after July.

Since the beginning of 2023, IRCC has held only two all program draws, meaning draws in which candidates from all three Express Entry managed programs were invited based on their minimum CRS score. Those draws each invited 5,000 candidates and were held one week apart on January 11 and 18.

IRCC then waited two weeks for the next draw, which was the first PNP-only draw since June 2022. On the following day, IRCC held another draw, inviting 3,300 candidates from only the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP). This was the first time since Express Entry began in 2015 that IRCC has held a FSWP-only draw. The FSWP is one of the most prominent Express Entry programs and open to candidates overseas who meet the work experience, language and educational experience requirements.

Express Entry draws are totally at the discretion of the immigration minister and IRCC. There is no law in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act that dictates when draws will occur, the number of candidates or the minimum CRS cut-off score.

IRCC launches application tracker for Express Entry programs

On February 8, IRCC announced that candidates in the Federal Skilled Workers Program (FSWP), the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) and the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) will now be able to monitor their applications online. It will also apply to candidates in Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs).

These status trackers will allow clients to monitor their application and stay informed on any updates regarding actions that may be required to keep their file moving. Data from January 31 shows 47,868 applicants for Express Entry programs waiting in the queue and 66,214 for PNPs.

IRCC has introduced these trackers as a way to increase transparency and improve access to information. Last year, an identical system was introduced for family class permanent residence applicants, sponsors and their representatives.

What is Express Entry?

There are three Canadian immigration programs under the Express Entry application management system: the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) and the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP). Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) candidates in the Express Entry pool are already eligible for at least one of these programs.

Candidates are evaluated for Express Entry programs using the points-based Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), to rank candidates’ profiles. Candidates with the highest scores will receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) and can then apply for permanent residency.

The candidates (now applicants) must then apply within 60 days. Once an application is submitted, an IRCC officer will review and decide whether an applicant is approved or not. If they are approved, the applicant is now a permanent resident of Canada, and may settle in the country.

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