Many foreign nationals who have spent a year living and working in Canada will soon be able to settle down permanently in the True North. Thanks to exciting and unprecedented moves by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), achieving permanent residency status has never been easier.

IRCC’s goal for 2021 is to naturalize 401,000 immigrants into permanent residents of Canada. On June 24, Canada invited 6,000 immigrants already living in the country to apply to call Canada their permanent home through the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) program by participating in the Express Entry draw.

The main qualifiers for CEC candidates are having a fairly decent command of the English or French languages and having achieved at least one year of skilled work experience in Canada.

The Express Entry draw made applying for permanent residency much easier by dropping the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score down to 357 points for the CEC draw, the second-lowest since 468 in December 2020. The lowest ever CRS score was just 75 in February 2021, when 27,332 CEC candidates were invited to apply. In a recent Provincial Nominees Program (PNP)-only Express Entry draw, IRCC invited 1,002 candidates to submit their applications.

Speaking of score points, CEC-only and PNP-only Express Entry draws have notably different requirements. PNP applicants earn an automatic 600 points because they compete for invitations from other immigration programs while CEC candidates don’t. This allows IRCC to let the CRS cut-off scores drop to encourage more immigrants living in Canada to become permanent residents through the CEC-only draws.

Candidates who met the score had until 10:15 a.m. UTC on February 17 to submit their Express Entry profile to get their invite. IRCC had to set the deadline to fall in line with the tie-break rule, which is really just an admin thing and doesn’t mean there was an actual tie.

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