What is the change? A report on the first full year of Canada’s Express Entry system has been released by the ministry of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.

What does the change mean? More than 31,000 invitations to apply for permanent residency were issued to foreign nationals in the first year, of which more than 21,000 applications remain pending and about 10,000 foreign nationals and their family members were admitted to Canada.

Key statistics:

  • Of the total 191,279 Express Entry profiles submitted as of Jan. 3, 63,937 profiles remained in the pool as active candidates or with an outstanding invitation to apply (after removing candidates who were ineligible, who left the pool or whose profiles expired).
  • The top country of nationality of those invited to apply was India (22 percent), followed by the Philippines (13 percent), then China, the United Kingdom, Ireland and the U.S. (all under 6 percent). A total of 78 percent of invitations to apply were issued to those residing in Canada.
  • Food industry professionals were the largest group of invited candidates, following by IT professionals, business and finance professionals and university professors.
  • As of Jan. 3, only slightly more than 4 percent of active candidates in the Express Entry pool had total scores above 450, and more than 50 percent of active candidates had scores between 350 and 449. Candidates with scores below 450 have never been issued an invitation to apply.
  • On average, 60 percent of candidates who received invitations to apply scored 600 or more points.
  • Candidates who held a Canadian study permit had a median score of 408, compared with 360 for those who have never held one.
  • Of the four streams, the Federal Skilled Worker program had the highest number of invitations to apply (43 percent) followed by Canadian Experience Class (36 percent), provincial nominee programs (13 percent), and Federal Skilled Trades program (8 percent). Across all streams, Alberta Province saw the highest number of applications for permanent residence, followed closely by Ontario and British Columbia.

Background: The Express Entry system launched in January 2015, using a 1,200-point comprehensive ranking system to prioritize candidates for permanent residency. Individuals must set up an online profile and earn points for qualifying job offers or provincial nominations and various human capital factors. Those who have an LMIA-supported job offer or a provincial nomination are automatically awarded 600 points.

BAL Analysis: Although the report is only a snapshot and the system is evolving, it confirms the strong advantage of those with an LMIA-supported job offer or provincial nomination. In addition, most of the successful applicants were in skilled positions. The report also showed that international students are at a serious disadvantage under Express Entry in contrast to the previous system.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Canada. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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