Maligne Lake in Alberta, Canada

The 22nd draw for Canadian immigration through the Express Entry selection system has been performed by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) on December 4, 2015. A total of 1,451 Invitations to Apply (ITAs) for Canadian permanent residence were issued to candidates with 461 or more Comprehensive Ranking System  (CRS) points.

This latest draw represents a significant drop in the CRS point requirement compared with the previous (21st) draw, which took place just seven days ago on November 27.

The CRS point requirement has decreased for each of the four draws that have taken place since October 23, from 489 to 484, then to 472, before this latest cut-off point of 461. The lowest CRS point requirement of any draw so far was 450.

CRS Point Requirement may continue to decrease

Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) has stated that the total intake of economic immigrants to Canada through Express Entry is set to increase once the backlog of applications from 2014 has been cleared. This was first disclosed in a mid-year CIC report that was released in August, and was reiterated more recently at the 23rd Annual Immigration Law Summit, which was held earlier last month in Toronto, Ontario.

At that summit, a spokesperson for CIC made some noteworthy comments about the past, present, and future of draws made from the Express Entry pool. The CIC spokesperson stated that the increase in the CRS point requirement in October, 2015 was largely due to the fact that many provinces did not open their Express Entry Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) streams, through which successful candidates may obtain an additional 600 CRS points, until months after the system was launched. As a result, there was a rush of PNP certificates being issued to proactive candidates in the Express Entry pool. This had the effect of increasing the number of candidates who have received an additional 600 CRS points.

In addition, the spokesperson said that the earliest Express Entry draws, which took place in the first few months of the year, had a relatively high CRS point requirement because of pent-up demand from candidates who already had job offers supported by a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).

Express Entry

Express Entry is Canada's immigration management system for the federal economic immigration programs, namely: Federal Skilled Worker, Federal Skilled Trades, and the Canadian Experience Class. Express Entry came into operation on January 1, 2015.

Eligible candidates may submit a profile into the Express Entry pool, where they are ranked according to the CRS. The government of Canada selects the top-ranked candidates on a priority basis when it performs one of its frequent draws from the pool. Candidates who are issued an invitation to apply for permanent residence then have 60 days to submit a complete e-application, from which point the government of Canada aims to process the application within six months. A number of early applicants have had their applications processed in under half that time.

Click here for more information on draws from the Express Entry pool that have taken place so far.

Express Entry quick facts, from January 1 to December 4 (All dates are for 2015)

  • Launch date: January 1
  • First draw from the pool: January 31
  • Most recent draw from the pool: December 4
  • Minimum CRS points required for selection in any one draw: 450 (September 18 & October 2)
  • Largest number of invitations to apply issued in any one draw: 1,637 (March 27)
  • Fewest invitations to apply issued in any one draw: 715
  • Largest decrease in CRS points required between two consecutive draws: 273 (from May 22 to June 12 draws)
  • Smallest decrease in CRS points required between two consecutive draws: 0 (from September 18 to October 2 draws)
  • Largest increase in CRS points required between two consecutive draws: 302 (from April 17 to May 22 draws)
  • Smallest increase in CRS points required between two consecutive draws: 0 (from September 18 to October 2 draws)
  • Longest gap between two consecutive draws: 35 days (from April 17 to May 22 draws)
  • Shortest gap between two consecutive draws: 7 days (on six occasions)
  • Total number of invitations to apply issued: 29,560

Draws From The Express Entry Pool (Updated)

  Date when Invitations To Apply Were Issued Number of Invitations Issued Minimum CRS Points Required Program Specified
1st Express Entry Draw January 31, 2015 779 886 All Programs
2nd Express Entry Draw February 7, 2015 779 818 All Programs
3rd Express Entry Draw February 20, 2015 849 808 CEC
4th Express Entry Draw February 27, 2015 1,187 735 All Programs
5th Express Entry Draw March 20, 2015 1,620 481 All Programs
6th Express Entry Draw March 27, 2015 1,637 453 All Programs
7th Express Entry Draw April 10, 2015 925 469 All Programs
8th Express Entry Draw April 17, 2015 715 453 All Programs
9th Express Entry Draw May 22, 2015 1,361 755 All Programs
10th Express Entry Draw June 12, 2015 1,501 482 All Programs
11th Express Entry Draw June 27, 2015 1,575 469 All Programs
12th Express Entry Draw July 10, 2015 1,516 463 All Programs
13th Express Entry Draw July 17, 2015 1,581 451 All Programs
14th Express Entry Draw August 7, 2015 1,402 471 All Programs
15th Express Entry Draw August 21, 2015 1,523 456 All Programs
16th Express Entry Draw September 8, 2015 1,517 459 All Programs
17th Express Entry Draw September 18, 2015 1,545 450 All Programs
18th Express Entry Draw October 2, 2015 1,530 450 All Programs
19th Express Entry Draw October 23, 2015 1,502 489 All Programs
20th Express Entry Draw November 13, 2015 1,506 484 All Programs
21st Express Entry Draw November 27, 2015 1,559 472 All Programs
22nd Express Entry Draw December 4, 2015 1,451 461 All Programs