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A look at British Columbia Express Entry nominations in 2018

British Columbia nominated 3,100 candidates in the federal Express Entry system for Canadian permanent residence in 2018 through its provincial nominee program, the BC PNP. 

BC PNP shows the majority of these nominations  — 1,999 — were issued through the Express Entry BC (EEBC) Skilled Worker category, which is open to skilled foreign workers with work experience and a job offer in an eligible high-demand occupation in the province.

Another 936 nominations were issued through the EEBC: International Graduate category and 165 went Express Entry candidates through the EEBC: International Post-Graduate category.

The Express Entry system manages the pool of candidates for Canada’s three Federal High Skilled economic immigration programs — the Federal Skilled Worker Class, the Federal Skilled Trades Class and the Canadian Experience Class.

British Columbia’s EEBC categories allow the BC PNP to select eligible Express Entry candidates and nominate them for permanent residence in the province.

The main advantage of a provincial nomination for Express Entry candidates is the 600 additional points that the nominated candidate receives toward their Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score, which effectively assures an invitation to apply for Canadian permanent residence.

                          Find out if you are eligible to enter the Express Entry pool

A full-time, permanent job offer in the province is required in order to be eligible for the EEBC: Skilled Worker category and the EEBC: International Graduate category, which is open to Express Entry candidates who graduated from an eligible Canadian university or college within the last three years.

A job offer is not required in order to receive a nomination through the EEBC: International Post-Graduate category, which is open to international graduates of eligible B.C. institutions who have obtained a master’s or doctoral degree in an eligible scientific discipline.

Express Entry candidates who wish to be considered for a provincial nomination through the EEBC: Skilled Worker and EEBC: International Graduate categories are required to register via the province’s points-based Skills Immigration Registration System (SIRS), which helps B.C. to select workers who are best-suited to its labour market needs.

SIRS registrants are given a score based on factors that include their job offer, its location and annual wage. Points are also awarded for their education, related work experience and proficiency in English.

The BC PNP also requires that a candidate’s potential employer meet specified eligibility requirements.

Candidates who are not in the Express Entry pool can be nominated through one of the BC PNP’s Skills Immigrationnomination streams.

These so-called “base nomination” streams issued 3,339 nominations in 2018, of which 1,699 went to candidates in the Skills Immigration: Skilled Worker category.

Another 61 nominations were issued through the BC PNP’s Entrepreneur Immigration Stream.

British Columbia had an allocation of 6,500 nominations through Canada’s Provincial Nominee Program in 2018

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Express Entry Draw Proceeds with Record Begin to 2019, CRS Score Drops


The Government of Canada held its second Express Entry draw of 2019 on Wednesday, January 23, issuing 3,900 invitations to apply for Canadian permanent residence to candidates with ranking scores as low as 443.  

Canada has now issued 7,800 invitations to candidates in the federal Express Entry system since the start of 2019. This is the most Invitations to Apply (ITAs) issued as of January 23 since Express Entry was introduced in 2015 to manage the pool of candidates for Canada’s three Federal High Skilled economic immigration categories —  the  Federal Skilled Worker Class, Federal Skilled Trades Class, and Canadian Experience Class.

Candidates for these three categories are ranked based on scores awarded for factors such as age, education, work experience and proficiency in English or French and a set number of the highest-scoring candidates are invited to apply for Canadian permanent residence through regular invitation rounds.

This year’s record start is not unexpected given Canada’s higher admissions targets for 2019 and 2020 for Federal High Skilled economic immigration candidates, the vast majority of whom have their applications for permanent resident status processed through the  Canadian Express Entry system.

In order to meet these higher targets, it is expected that Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will have to issue more ITAs over the course of this year than it did in 2018, which saw IRCC issue its most invitations in a single year.

                                             Find out if you are eligible to enter the Express Entry pool

CRS drops six points

The minimum Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score in this latest draw was six points lower than the minimum score in the first draw of 2019, which took place on January 10. Today’s score of 443 was the lowest score yet for a January draw through the Express Entry system.

This decrease can be explained by the fact only two weeks elapsed between these two invitation rounds, while a gap of three weeks separated the January 10 draw and the previous invitation round on December 19.

Less time between draws means fewer candidates have time to enter the Express Entry pool, which can have the effect of lowering the minimum CRS score.

The tie-break rule in the January 23 draw was January 2, 2019, at 03:55:26 UTC. This means that all candidates with a CRS score above 443, as well as those candidates with scores of 443 who entered their profile in the Express Entry pool before the selected date and time, received an ITA in this invitation round.

Express Entry candidates with scores beneath today’s cut-off score can take steps to increase their scores and improve their ranking.

A provincial nomination through Canada’s Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) is one increasingly popular option for Express Entry candidates looking to better their scores.

The PNP allows participating Canadian provinces and territories to nominate an allotted number of economic immigration candidates for permanent residence each year, including Express Entry candidates.

A provincial nomination through an Express Entry-linked PNP stream results in an additional 600 CRS points, which effectively assures an invitation to apply for Canadian permanent residence.

Express Entry PNP streams in Ontario, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, British Columbia, and Prince Edward Island have been active this month.

The following are hypothetical examples of candidates who would have obtained an ITA in the January 10 draw:

Jake and Monica are 29 and 33 years old respectively. They both hold a Bachelor’s degree. Neither of them has worked or studied in Canada. Jake has been working as a consultant for the past three years while Monica has been working for four years as a receptionist. They both took the IELTS exam and Jake obtained a score of 8.5 in all categories while Monica obtained a score of 8 in all categories. Jake applied as the principal applicant and their CRS score of 443 would have been sufficient to obtain an ITA in today’s draw.

Ahmed is 36 years old and holds a Master’s degree. He has never worked or studied in Canada. Ahmed has been working for five-and-a-half years as an engineer. He took the IELTS and obtained a score of 8 in all categories of the exam, except listening, in which he obtained 8.5. His CRS score of 443 would have been sufficient to obtain an ITA in today’s draw.

“It’s been an impressive start to 2019 and one of the big questions now is how big will draws get in the weeks and months to come,” said David Cohen, senior partner with the Campbell Cohen Canadian immigration law firm in Montreal.

                               Find out if you are eligible to enter the Express Entry pool