Canada invites another 7,000 candidates in surprise Express Entry draw

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Express Entry draw: Canada invites another 3500 candidates.

IRCC has held the eleventh Express Entry draw of 2023.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) issued a total of 3,500 invitations to apply (ITAs) to candidates in an all-program draw. Candidates required a minimum Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score of 483.

In an all-program draw candidates are considered from the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) and the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP).

This draw follows the one on April 12 in which 3,500 candidates received invitations to apply (ITAs) in an all-program draw. Those candidates needed a minimum CRS score of at least 486.

The April 12 draw invited just half the number of candidates that were invited in the draws on March 15, March 23 and March 29, all of which invited 7,000 candidates each over two weeks instead of the typical bi-weekly draws. It also raised the minimum CRS score from 481 to 486. The draw size and higher CRS score are more in line with previous draws seen in 2022 and early 2023.

March milestones in Express Entry

March this year saw over 21,000 ITAs issued in a single month. This was the second-highest number of ITAs issued in the history of Express Entry.

The highest number of ITAs issued in a month was when 27,332 CEC candidates were invited in a single draw in February 2021.

That said, the first draw in March for 7,000 candidates was the largest-ever all-program draw. The following two draws repeated this number for a total of 21,000 candidates invited in two weeks and a monthly total of 21,667 ITAs issued. The remaining 667 ITAs were issued in a March 1 draw that targeted only Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) candidates.

In total, there were four Express Entry draws in March, one each week. This is unusual because draws typically only occur every two weeks on Wednesdays.

What is Express Entry?

Express Entry is the application management system for three Canadian immigration programs: 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.

Express Entry uses a points-based system, the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), to rank candidates’ profiles. The top-scoring candidates receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) and can then apply for permanent residency.

After the candidate applies, an IRCC officer reviews the application and decides if they are approved. Once this is complete, if approved, the candidate is now a permanent resident of Canada and one step closer to becoming a Canadian citizen.

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