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IRCC Resumes Express Entry Draws, Issuing 2,985 ITAs to PNP Candidates
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IRCC Resumes Express Entry Draws, Issuing 2,985 ITAs to PNP Candidates

May 31, 2024

In a significant development, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has resumed its Express Entry draws, issuing 2,985 Invitations to Apply (ITAs) in the most recent draw. This draw, held on May 31, was program-specific, targeting candidates in the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). To be considered, candidates required a minimum Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score of 676.

This event marks the first program-specific Express Entry draw since the introduction of category-based selection draws in June 2023. Unlike general draws that invite applicants from all programs, program-specific draws focus solely on candidates from a particular permanent residency program.

Today’s draw also breaks a month-long pause in Express Entry draws, the first since April 24. While IRCC has not provided a specific reason for the pause, a recent Access to Information Request revealed that all draws this year will follow a predetermined schedule. However, the schedule remains undisclosed to the public. Additionally, the size and frequency of the draws will be influenced by the 2024 and 2025 admissions targets, along with the department’s processing capacity.

Prior to the hiatus, April saw four draws. On April 10, IRCC invited 1,280 candidates in a general draw. The following day, 4,500 ITAs were issued in a category-based selection draw focusing on STEM occupations. The month continued with two more draws on April 23 and 24, inviting 2,095 candidates in a general draw and 1,400 candidates in a French proficiency category-based selection draw, respectively.

The Access to Information Request further outlined IRCC’s strategy for category-based selection draws in 2024. French proficiency is expected to lead these draws due to the high employment rate for bilingual candidates and their typically higher CRS scores, which indicate better chances of successful economic integration. STEM occupations will follow, accounting for 25% of ITAs, while healthcare occupations will receive 15%. Other categories such as transport, trades, and agriculture and agri-food will comprise 5% or less of all ITAs issued. The remaining 21.5% of ITAs are slated for general draws, with no mention of program-specific draws.

This latest draw underscores IRCC’s strategic approach to meeting Canada’s immigration targets while addressing specific economic needs through category-based and program-specific selections.

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