November 16 draw may be the final draw before improvements to Express Entry come into effect on November 19
The number of candidates being invited to apply for immigration to Canada through Express Entry has shot up yet again, with 2,427 Invitations to Apply (ITAs) having been issued to candidates with 470 or more Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points in a draw that took place on November 16, 2016.
This draw, the 47th in total since Express Entry was first launched, is likely to be the last draw to be made before significant changes are made to the way in which candidates are awarded points under the CRS. These changes, outlined below, will come into effect on Saturday, November 19.
Readers should note that the November 16 draw selected candidates under the existing points system, and not the points system that will be used as of November 19.
Draws are larger than ever
Over the past couple of months, the number of ITAs issued in Express Entry draws has increased substantially. As recently as the August 24 draw, only 750 candidates were issued an ITA and the CRS cut-off point was 538. Since that time, the number of ITAs issued has gone up six times in a row, and the CRS cut-off point has dropped to its current level of 470. The most recent Express Entry draws represent the largest upturn in the number of ITAs issued since the system was first introduced in January, 2015.
Big changes coming on November 19
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) describes the changes to be brought in this week as improvements to the Express Entry system.
The way in which points are awarded for a qualifying job offer will be changed. Importantly, job offers will no longer be worth 600 CRS points. Instead, a job offer may be worth 200 points (if the offer is in an occupation contained in a Major Group 00 of the National Occupational Classification) or 50 points (for all other job offers in a skilled occupation).
In addition, some non-LMIA-based job offers will also be awarded points for the first time. The new regulations will also allow the following individuals to be awarded points for a qualifying job offer:
- Candidates with a work permit issued under an international agreement, such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
- Candidates with a work permit issued under the ‘significant benefits to Canada’ criteria, such as Intra-Company Transfers.
A positive move from IRCC
“Many candidates in the pool were hopeful that there would be another draw before the changes to Express Entry are implemented. This was particularly the case for those candidates who had received qualifying job offers and updated their profiles accordingly. It is only fair that IRCC allowed these candidates to receive an ITA based on the current regulations,” says Attorney David Cohen.
“As for candidates who remain in the pool, as well as individuals thinking of creating a profile in the near future — the future looks bright. Not only does the government of Canada plan on welcoming more newcomers through Express Entry in 2017, but the system due to come into force on November 19 may be more equitable and promote the human capital factors of candidates, relative to the strength of a job offer under the CRS.”