The reason IRCC held draws for CEC and PNP candidates only is because of Covid-19 lockdown restrictions. These candidates are very likely in Canada already, which means that travel restrictions wouldn’t be a problem for them. Until recently, approved permanent residents in other countries weren’t allowed to land in Canada, which got in the way of finalizing their permanent resident status.
Canada is easing up some of its pandemic-related travel restrictions for fully vaccinated people. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Canada is considering a further lift to some of the remaining travel restrictions. However, Canada’s government is still playing it safe given the worsening situation of the virus in some countries, especially since the rise of the Covid-19 delta variant.
The federal government still maintains strict control of Canada’s borders, keeping them closed to travellers from high-risk countries like India and also to non-essential travel.
So, when will IRCC hold another Express Entry draw for all programs? It hasn’t said when yet, but it still has to consider the Federal Skilled Worker and Trades programs for 2021. Also, given its ambitious plan to invite 401,000 permanent residents, it will probably have to hold an all-programs draw later in the year to meet its target.
It’s worth noting that those who were invited to apply for their permanent residency through Express Entry draws in the second half of 2021 are unlikely to complete the process before the end of the year. Some receiving invites in the year’s second half, whether they’re abroad or in Canada, will only be able to meet the landing requirement in 2022.
Now that Canada is relaxing travel restrictions and with things looking up for countries hard hit by the virus, like India, which is a high immigrant source for Canada, IRCC should soon be ready to invite the Express Entry candidates from abroad. With these disruptions out of the way, candidates will be given the all-clear to enter Canada and complete their landings.
Over the next three years, Canada’s federal government plans to welcome as many immigrants as it’s going to take to break previous immigration records. So far, 108,500 new immigrants are expected to enter Canada via Express Entry programs in 2021, which is already double last year’s numbers.
The IRCC said that roughly 87% of 27,332 eligible CEC candidates invited took advantage of February’s low CRS score of 75 and successfully applied for their permanent residency before the 90-day deadline. This is why 2021’s immigrant numbers are so high.
88,715 Invitations to Apply (ITA) have already been sent by IRCC in 2021, which is considerably higher than the 46,392 sent at the same time last year.