On April 13, 787 Express Entry candidates were invited to apply for permanent residence in Canada.

787 PNP candidates have been asked to apply for Express Entry.

All of the invited candidates had received a nomination from a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) with a minimum Comprehensive Ranking Score (CRS) of 782. The lowest-scoring candidates would have received 182 base points if they had not been nominated.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) welcomed 919 PNP candidates with scores of at least 785 in the last invitation round.

Canada only welcomed 6,470 Express Entry individuals to apply for immigration in the first quarter of 2022. Since the start of Express Entry in 2015, the first quarter has been the slowest.

Since September 2021, when draws for Canadian Experience Class (CEC) candidates halted, IRCC has solely invited PNP candidates, resulting in a decrease in overall invitations. Since December 2020, there have been no drawings for Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) candidates.

Most draws before the pandemic were not program-specific, which meant that individuals from any Express Entry-managed programme might be asked to apply.

However, due to COVID-19-related travel restrictions, Canada has decided to focus on fulfilling its record-breaking immigration targets by converting a large number of temporary residents to permanent residents. The quantity of Express Entry applications piled up as a result of this policy, particularly FSWP applications, which were frequently from abroad candidates. Due to the backlog, processing timeframes have beyond the six-month standard.

According to internal briefing memos, IRCC agreed to halt Express Entry draws for non-PNP programmes unless the backlog was cut in half and processing criteria were reduced to six months. Minister of Immigration Sean Fraser has hinted that skilled worker drawings could start as early as this spring, but no date has been set.

What is Express Entry, and how does it work?

Express Entry is the application management system for the Canadian Experience Class, the Federal Skilled Worker Program, and the Federal Skilled Trades Program, which are Canada’s three most popular immigration programmes. At least one of these programmes has already qualified PNP candidates in the Express Entry pool.

Express Entry ranks candidates’ profiles using a points-based mechanism known as the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). Candidates with the highest scores receive an Invitation to Seek (ITA), which they can use to apply for permanent residency.

After a candidate submits an application, an IRCC officer reviews it and makes a decision. The officer will seek biometrics and may schedule an interview or require additional paperwork.