Changes to the Express Entry system in Canada will take effect from this weekend relating to job offers, points awarded and permanent residence applications.
From 19 November the points awarded by the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) for a job offer will change in three ways. Firstly points will be awarded for job offers of eligible candidates on Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) exempt work permits.
It means that many people in Canada temporarily on an employer specific LMIA exempt work permit but who want to stay in Canada permanently will no longer need to get an LMIA to be awarded job offer points by the CRS.
Secondly, job offers will only need to be a minimum of one year in duration once they receive permanent residence. Officials said that it means that more highly skilled candidates working in contract based industries will have a higher likelihood of receiving an invitation to apply for permanent residence.
Finally the points awarded for job offers will be reduced. A total of 50 points will be awarded to candidates with a valid job offer in a National Occupational Classification (NOC) 0, A or B occupation, while a total of 200 points will be awarded to candidates with a valid job offer in a NOC 00 occupation.
The number of points awarded for a job offer often made it hard for highly skilled candidates without job offers to get an invitation to apply. This change means Canada will now welcome more highly skilled candidates whose skills and experience will help support and grow our economy.
Officials explained that the change in points for job offers will now also better recognise the skills and experience required for the job, together with the value that it brings to the economy.
There will also be changes in the education points with 15 points for a one or two year diploma or certificate obtained in Canada, 30 points for a degree, diploma or certificate of three years or longer, or for a Master’s, professional or doctoral degree of at least one academic year.
With these changes, more former international students will be able to transition to permanent residence using the Express Entry system. Former international students are regarded as a key source of candidates in Express Entry because of their age, education, skills and experience.
It is also thought that in addition to the time already spent in Canada, integrating into Canadian society permanently will be easier because they will have established social networks and familiarised themselves with life in Canada.
From 19 November candidates will have 90 days to complete an application for permanent residence if they get an invitation to apply. This will give candidates more time to gather all the required documentation and submit a complete application.
Immigration Minister John McCallum said that the changes are part of a number of improvements the Government is making on a continual basis to bring changes for a fairer and responsive immigration system that will address emerging needs and ensure long term economic growth for the middle class.
He explained that highly skilled immigrants, such as those who come through the Express Entry system, help strengthen Canada’s competitiveness in the global marketplace and are able to quickly contribute to Canada’s economy and society. They help create jobs, spur innovation and provide opportunities that benefit Canada’s middle class.
‘“We have committed to doing more to attract highly skilled immigrants to come to Canada and become permanent residents, because this is important to build our economy and strengthen our society. I am confident that the changes to Express Entry will be one of the many positive outcomes of the changes we will be bringing to our immigration system,’ he added.