Canada’s Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP) issued nearly 6,500 invitations to apply for provincial nomination during the month of September.

Nearly every Canadian province and territory, except Quebec and Nunavut, operates its own Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). Having their own immigration programs allows provincial governments to select the most suitable candidates to meet their local labour market needs and to manage the regional settlement of the immigrant population within their jurisdiction. Each province adopts its own criteria for selecting foreign workers eligible for Canadian permanent residence under its respective PNP.

While the federal government oversees main immigration pathways, immigration levels, and all aspects of permanent residence and citizenship regulations, Canada’s provinces have a key role to play, through the PNP, in selecting immigrants.

Since its launch in 1998, the PNP has become the second most important route to permanent residence in Canada. Between now and 2023, PNPs alone are expected to result in more than 80,000 immigrants per year being admitted as permanent residents.

September 2021 PNP-Focused Express Entry Highlights

Most participating provinces and territories have at least one PNP stream that is aligned with the federal Express Entry system—Canada’s principal source of economic immigration.

So far this year, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has been holding PNP–specific Express Entry draws, on average, every two weeks.

In September, IRCC conducted three Express Entry draws targeting PNP candidates, issuing 635 ITAs on September 1, another 521 on September 15, and lastly 761 on September 29. The number of PNP Express Entry invitations issued over the last month is therefore slightly higher compared with previous months.

Since the beginning of 2021, IRCC has been holding draws under PNP and Canadian Experience Class (CEC) categories only. There have been 18 PNP-specific draws so far this year and the number of invitations to apply via Express Entry has nearly doubled from this time last year.


The province held a total of five draws last month through the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP).

On September 14, 2021, Ontario held a round of invitations for the Masters Graduate and PhD Graduate streams. The province invited 691 international student graduates to apply for a provincial nomination. More specifically, Ontario invited 627 candidates to apply under the Masters Graduate stream who needed Expression of Interest (EOI) scores of 35 and above. Invited as well, were 64 candidates with EOI scores of 16 and above under the PhD Graduate stream.

The following week, the province issued invitations under the Employer Job Offer: Foreign Worker and Employer job offer: International Student streams. The new rounds of invitations were held on September 21 and 995 candidates were invited to apply for a provincial nomination. A total of 66 of these invitations went to immigration candidates who were registered for the Regional Immigration Pilot.

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