After an extended hiatus, Canadian immigration minister Sean Fraser announced that Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) and Canadian Experience Class (CEC) Express Entry draws will resume by early July.
About FSWP and CEC:
The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) Express Entry is an immigration program administered by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, the department responsible for immigration to Canada.
The Canadian Experience Class (CEC) program is ideal for candidates who have recent Canadian work experience and are seeking permanent immigration to Canada. CEC is also one of the fastest routes to Canadian permanent residence, taking as little as three to four months to process.
In order to get into the Express Entry pool of candidates, proficient workers have to be eligible for these programs. If so, they will get a score depending on the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), which awards points for a candidate’s age, education, work experience, language proficiency in English or French, in addition to other factors.
A SNAPSHOT of announcement:
- Express Entry invitations to FSWP, CEC, and FSTP candidates will resume in early July.
- The vast majority of new Express Entry applications will be processed within the six-month service standard. According to IRCC, current Express Entry processing times range from seven months to in excess of 20 months.
- Those with an expiring PGWP between January and December 2022 will qualify for an additional open work permit of up to 18 months beginning this summer. IRCC is working on a simplified process and will provide further details “in the weeks ahead.” IRCC notes about 95,000 PGWPs will expire in 2022, and it estimates as many as 50,000 PGWP holders could benefit from this new open work permit.
- Applicants will no longer be required to remain in Canada throughout the entire time their application is being processed.
- Applicants who also apply for an open work permit while they wait for their permanent residence application to be processed will be able to get work permits that are valid until the end of 2024. This will ensure all permanent residence applications will be finalized before applicants need to apply to extend their temporary status again.
- To support family reunification, the immediate family members included in a principal applicant’s permanent residence application who are outside of Canada will be eligible to get their own open work permit.
Express Entry and the COVID-19 pandemic:
Until this year, Express Entry was the primary source of economic-class immigrants.
Express Entry Program is an online system used by the Canadian government to organize and process applications for skilled workers who wish to immigrate to Canada and acquire Canadian permanent residence status. Currently, the system manages three key federal economic programs:
- Federal Skilled Worker (FSW)
- Federal Skilled Trades (FST)
- Canadian Experience Class (CEC)
It is a point-based system that evaluates a candidate’s profile based on certain human-capital factors including Age, Education, Work Experience, Language Proficiency, Spousal Sponsorship, and more.
Will the FSW CRS cut-off increase in 2022?
During the FSW and CEC draw pause, the number of candidates in the Express Entry pool grew significantly.
For this reason, IRCC believes that the FSW and CEC CRS cut-off would likely rise above 500 and remain high for about 6 months. Targeting candidates with this high CRS score would result in a very homogeneous pool of newcomers, which may point to an upheaval of the system altogether.
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