Canada Express Entry System


Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) introduced a new system known as Express Entry for accepting economic immigrants to Canada in January 2015. The new system was formulated to match skills of prospective immigrants with skill shortages and employer requirements in the country.

Evaluation System

A new point system (Comprehensive ranking system) replaced the old scoring system in which the applicants having a higher point score were given preference. The points were awarded for various factors like Age, Education, Experience, English Ability and siblings in Canada. Applicants could score extra for French language ability.

National Occupation Classification

The advantage of the new system was that the entire Occupation List (NOC 0, A, B) was open for applicants which was a big change compared to the shorter list of 50 occupations in previous immigration program of 2014. This opened up the possibilities for professionals from various backgrounds to make application to CIC for immigrating to Canada.

Invitation Round

CIC announced invitation rounds every fortnight or monthly to invite applicants to lodge the full application. A cut of score was announced and all applicants matching or crossing that score in the pool were issued Invitation to Apply.

English Language Ability

The applicants who are able to score CLB 9 in IELTS general have an advantage under express entry.  IELTS plays a vital role under express entry as it increases the CRS points.

Additional Points for Job Offer

In the system, any applicant who had secured a valid job offer from a Canadian Employee was awarded additional 600 points. This enabled the applicant to receive an invitation to apply from CIC

Provincial Nomination

In Canada, there are more than ten provinces. Each province operates and run’s its own immigration program. The province announces their own occupation in demand list depending on the skill shortages being faced in the local labor market. The applicants who are able to secure nomination from any of the province gain an additional 600 points under express entry profile, which results in the Invitation to Apply from CIC.

Siblings Points

CIC made changes in their Express Entry System in 2017 whereby applicants who had their sibling (Brother or sister by blood) living in Canada as Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident got additional 15 Points under express entry profile.

Cut off Score in 2017

The total invitations issued in 2017 were more than the combined invitations, which were issued in the first two years i.e. 2015, and 2016. This brought the cut off score to 413, which was announced in the May 31, 2017 round. Cut off score has since then has been hovering between mid 430’s and 450.

Going Forward in 2018

The Canadian Government recently announced the immigration plan for next three years whereby they have decided to welcome one million immigrants into the country. The immigration intake numbers for 2018 has been put at 310,000 which is higher than numbers for 2017 which were put at 300,000. With this increase in intake, it is likely that more invitation rounds would be issued which has the possibility to bring down the cut of score under express entry in 2018.

Author Bio: Prakriti Nanda is a Senior Associate at Pinnacle Legal LLP. Prakriti Nanda hold the responsibilities of both inbound and outbound immigration and advises businesses and individuals in all aspects of immigration law.

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