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IRCC issues most Express Entry ITAs in one month since February 2021

Vimal Sivakumar - 05 April, 2023


Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) issued 21,667 total Invitations to Apply (ITAs) in March 2023, also hitting three other key milestones over the course of four Express Entry draws throughout the month.

IRCC's 21,667 ITAs issued in March stand as the second most invitations issued in a single month since Express Entry began in 2015. The only month when the immigration department has ever issued more ITAs was February 2021, during which IRCC gave out 27,986 ITAs across two draws. 

Note: IRCC's first Express Entry draw in February 2021 (Feb. 10) saw the immigration department issue 654 ITAs, which was followed by a 27,332 ITA draw on February 13

Largest all-program Express Entry draw(s) ever

In addition to the above milestone for single-month ITAs, IRCC also conducted its largest-ever all-program draw this past month. This record was set on March 15, when 7,000 candidates received an invitation to apply for permanent resident status in Canada. Previously, IRCC's largest all-program draw (by number of ITAs) occurred in January this year, when 5,500 ITAs were issued in the first draw of 2023 (January 11). 

Further to setting this all-time record, IRCC proceeded to match the number of ITAs issued in the March 15th draw twice more in the month. This means that, for three consecutive weeks, IRCC issued 7,000 ITAs to Canadian immigration candidates - setting the table for yet another Express Entry milestone. 
21,000 ITAs were issued over two weeks

Due to the timing of the three draws above, IRCC issued a total of 21,000 ITAs over two weeks in March. The first of these draws, which set the initial all-program draw ITA record, came on March 15. Eight days later, Canada's immigration department held a surprise draw, during which an additional 7,000 ITAs were issued on March 23. Finally, IRCC issued their last set of 7,000 ITAs on March 29.

Comprehensive Ranking System score cut-offs for all-program draws hit their lowest in 27 months  

At the end of March, Express Entry candidates saw the system's lowest all-program cut-off Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score since December 2020.

As of the last draw conducted this past month, the cut-off CRS score fell to 481. This comes after candidates saw a cut-off score of 484 on March 23 and 490 on March 15.

Note: On December 23, 2020, the CRS cut-off score (for all-program draws) was 468

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