Canada immigration news: Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) recently announced that after almost a year and a half, FSWP and CEC Express Entry draws would commence, once again, as early as mid-July 2022!
Canada’s Minister of Immigration, Sean Fraser, also confirmed that new Express Entry permanent residency applications would finally revert to its usual six-month visa processing times.
This announcement was made earlier in February 2022, stating that IRCC would be implementing $85 million in resources to help tackle the backlog in new visa applications due to travel restrictions caused by the pandemic.
At the beginning of the pandemic, IRCC focussed on processing applications of CEC applicants. The most notable draw, to date, took place on February 13, where a record 27,332 candidates received Invitations to Apply (ITAs) for permanent residency with Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) cut-off scores as low as just 75 PR points!
IRCC had also focussed on PNP-linked applicants to ensure that the labour demands of each program was still being met.
Unemployment records are at an all-time low, and job vacancies are soaring, making this the ideal time to relaunch some of Canada's most popular immigration programs through Express Entry draws.
“With the economy growing faster than employers can hire new workers, Canada needs to look at every option so that we have the skills and labour needed to fuel our growth. Immigration will be crucial to easing our labour shortage, and these measures aim to address pressing needs in all sectors across the country, while providing more opportunities for recent graduates and other applicants to build their lives in Canada and continue contributing to our short-term recovery and long-term prosperity.”
Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship
Additional Canada Immigration New: Changes to Look Forward To
1. New Temporary Policy for PGWP holders with expiring visas can apply for a new Canada open work permit
Minister Sean Fraser also announced that Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) holders, whose visas are set to expire between January and December 2022, would be able to apply for an open work permit valid for 18 months! International students in Canada with PGWPs can apply as early as Summer 2022.
Details about the new streamlined application process for this temporary policy will be released in the coming weeks.
This comes shortly after an announcement was made that IRCC would be investing $85 million to speed up visa processing and help alleviate the backlog in visa applications due to the effects of COVID.
Most CEC applicants are international students who have gained valuable Canadian work experience on an open work permit obtained through the PGWP, making it the ideal pathway to getting Canada PR status.
2. Permanent resident applicants can get a Canada open work permit valid until 2024
Those who have applied for permanent residency in Canada and are still awaiting their results can apply for an open work permit that will expire in 2024!
157,000 former international students received permanent residency in 2021, of which 88,000 acquired sufficient work experience through the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP).
More than 100,000 work permit applications have been processed within the first three months of this year, nearly double that in the first quarter of 2021.
3. Permanent residency applicants can leave the country while their application is being processed
Permanent residency applicants won’t have to stay in Canada while waiting for their work permit to be processed.
4. Family members of permanent residency applicants now qualify for open work permits
All immediate family members of permanent residency applicants who are applying from outside of Canada may now be eligible to apply for a Canadian open work permit.
For the latest results, visit our Express Entry draws page.
For more information about the new measures put in place to help address the labour shortage in Canada, visit the IRCC website here, or subscribe to our mailing list to keep up-to-date on the latest Canada immigration news.