Canada to target occupations in Express Entry draws starting in 2023

Canada is all set to alter how Express Entry applicants get selected in the first quarter of 2023 and ahead.

From 2023, Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will use the new administration to hold the draws of Express Entry that invite applicants based on determined characteristics in lieu of their CRS scores.

The anticipated modification to Express Entry got possible because of Bill C-19, which got a royal acknowledgment and passed in both houses of parliament on June 23. Under Bill C-19, the Canadian immigration minister has the power to invite applicants with any in-demands skills or abilities.

The immigration minister of Canada, Sean Fraser, said in an interview last June that the modification to the Express Entry will help Canada select candidates who can help in economic success.

Minister said that even though Express Entry already provides Canada with an ambitious advantage, there is still a place for improvement.

Where [the Express Entry system] could be improved is at present if there are particular challenges that your economy is facing, it might be facing in the long term. We don’t have the ability to tailor the invitations to apply to the Express Entry system to meet those in-demand skills or qualifications,” Fraser said.

IRCC said that Bill C-19 would permit Canada to invite Express Entry applicants on a new basis, which will help the economic aim recognized by the minister.

There is no confirmed date on which applicants will get ITA (invitations to apply) in targeted draws. The minister said that he would consult with the provinces, business councils, and other stakeholders to assess which applicants to target.

The minister’s new administration means they can now invite express entry applicants on the basis of economic needs and labour shortages.

For example- healthcare in Canada gets seen as a pressing occupational category. The job vacancy rate in the healthcare sector stood at 6% in October. The Canadian government has taken measures to fill the jobs in this sector, such as removing some restrictions for internationally trained physicians who already stay in Canada and the recently announced Foreign Credential Recognition Program. However, it is reasonable that future Express Entry program draws will target only applicants with backgrounds in healthcare professions to fill empty positions at a fast rate.

Why is the system changing?

Presently, Canada is going through a labor shortage due to the growing age population and low birth rate. Canada is anticipating that by 2030, over nine million Canadians will reach the retirement age of 65, and there are not sufficient younger people to fill their positions, which lead to a high number of job vacancies that would be hard to fill. Canada highly relies on immigration to manage its workforce and maintain economic growth.

Canada, to manage and expand the workforce, the immigration levels plan 2023-2025 targets up to 500,000 new permanent residents each year by 2025. Out of these, around 110,000 can get admitted by Express Entry programs.

How does Express Entry work?

The Express Entry unique application management system aims to smooth the visa process for skilled workers applying under three economic immigration programs; the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP), and the Canadian Experience Class (CEC).

Since the launch of the Express Entry application management system in January 2015, applicants have got selected to give ITAs entirely on the basis of their CRS (Comprehensive Ranking System) score.

Under the CRS, candidates get evaluated on multiple factors, such as work experience, education, or language proficiency, and other human capital factors like their age or if they have any family living in Canada. Each factor gets awarded points, and the candidates with the highest points have the high CRS scores and, therefore, get an invitation to apply in an Express Entry draw.

With targeted draws, Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada will still need that candidate to meet the eligibility requirements for an Express Entry program. However, a candidate’s Comprehensive Ranking System score would not be the final factor in achieving an ITA. The draws could change to candidates who had determined work experience, education, or language skills.