Express Entry Record-Breaking Year-2020

The year 2020 is considered as one of the biggest hits for Express Entry despite the hardship created by the impact of Coronavirus (COVID-19). Even by this pandemic, the immigration level proposed by the Canadian Immigration department met the desired quota and exceed the expectations of everyone.

Canada made a grand farewell to the year 2020 by issuing 107,350 Invitations to Apply (ITAs) to the candidates enrolled in the Express Entry process. With this kind of invitation sent all the records were broken right from the launch of the Express Entry program in the year 2015. As Express Entry is a profile management system that manages profile for three federal programs, namely:

Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)

Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)

Canadian Experience Class (CEC)

The Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) is also one of the programs that are indirectly involved with the Express Entry program.

There are around 36 invitation rounds that the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) have made so far in the year 2020. This number of draws has is 10 more than draws held in the previous year as IRCC was holding draws targeted only for CEC and PNP candidates pre-pandemic. This was only done for the candidates that were already in Canada through the Express Entry program.

The record for both the biggest and smallest Express Entry draws was broken in the year 2020. The smallest draw was held on 15 April 2020 where only 118 invitations were sent. But by the end of the year, the Canadian government started giving out 5000 invitations in a single go. This increase in draw size is particularly an attempt to compensate for the shortcoming this year and to fulfill the immigration target of 401,000 new permanent residents. Candidates who apply for a PR visa after getting an ITA are usually given six months for making the decision and clearing out their things. So these candidates will become permanent residents in the year 2021.

Canada Immigration Department has allotted around 108,500 new immigrants to come through the Express Entry program for the year 2021 out of the total 401,000 new immigrants. While these targets are going to hike up in the upcoming years maxing out to around 113,750 by the year 2023.

The increase in admission can be deduced from the fact that there were low admissions in the year 2020 due to travel restrictions and pandemic situations. Travel restrictions, in particular, made it very difficult for candidates to land in Canada. 

2020 Draw Size:

2020 started off with a consistent number of draws of regular sizes. In the first quarter, IRCC issued 4500 invitations on 19 February 2020.

The day when travel restrictions came into effect was on March 18, 2020, the same day PNP only draw took place. This draw only offered invitations to 668 candidates only. This is a new kind of pattern that IRCC has been following where there is a small PNP-only draw followed by a large CEC-only draw. With this kind of draw, the total number of invitations reach up to 3600 to 3900 invitations.  

In July and another one in August, Canada held an all program draw. After that IRCC went back to consistently holding these draws in September. Soon after that the number of invitations reached from 4200 to a record-breaking 5000 per draw.    

On August 6, 2020, only one Federal Skilled Trades draw was held where a total of 250 candidates were invited. 

Score Requirement:

Canada deploys a system of selecting candidates by the use of the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score. The Canadian Government then decides which top-scoring candidates they will select for the invitations. The date and time of the filing are also one of the deciding factors used by the IRCC. These factors are used in the tie-breaker rule while deciding candidates with the same minimum CRS score. 

In the all program draw, the program itself doesn’t matter that much as IRCC just invites top-scoring candidates. PNP draws are the ones that are usually on the higher side of the CRS score as there is an additional 600 points added to the candidate’s profile for getting a nomination.

CEC applicants are usually the one program where the CRS score is on the lower side as they are not competing in PNP or FSWP. Federal Skilled Trades Program also has a low CRS score requirement, this is because this is a draw is taking place only a few time by the Canadian government. 

The CRS score of 415 was the lowest in the FSTP draw. In the CEC draw, the lowest CRS score requirement was 431 on 25 June 2020.

The CRS score takes a dip in the all program draw held on December 23, 2020. The CRS score for that was 468. This CRS score is the lowest since the draw held in October 2019.

Express Entry Program 2021:

Canada is trying to reach the target set out by them for the next year. For this Canada has to approve 8946 Express Entry applicants every month. With two draws per month, it will be around 4473 applicants per draw.

Canada will have to give ITAs to around 4500 per draw in order to compensate for the changes like for applicants who are not willing to settle in Canada or how are not getting approved in the Express Entry Program. 

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