CanadaCanadian CitizenshipExpress EntrySettle in CanadaJuly 5, 2023by Neeraja KolaganiPriority Given to Transport Occupations in IRCC’s Express Entry Draws

On May 31st, Sean Fraser, the Immigration Minister of Canada, made an announcement regarding the implementation of category-based selection draws for Express Entry candidates by the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

These category-based draws will prioritize candidates in the Express Entry system who possess strong French language proficiency or work experience in specific fields. The decision to choose these occupations was based on information received by IRCC about labor market shortages in Canada. Additionally, IRCC consulted with its partners, including provinces, territories, and stakeholders across the country.

The first category-based Express Entry draw took place on June 28th, inviting 500 healthcare workers to apply for permanent residency. Another draw is scheduled for July 5th, where 1,500 healthcare workers will be invited to apply. Furthermore, a draw for eligible candidates in STEM professions is also expected to take place on the same day.

The inclusion of transport occupations as a category was motivated by the data released by Employment and Social Development Canada, which indicated a doubling of occupation shortages between 2019 and 2021. Statistics Canada’s data from the fourth quarter of 2022 revealed a significant number of job vacancies in the wholesale trades and retail trades sectors, falling under the Trades category.

To enhance Express Entry through category-based selection, IRCC conducted a public consultation process. The engagement involved gathering feedback and suggestions from various stakeholders and the public. Stakeholders expressed support for category-based selection to address labor market shortages in specific occupations or sectors, with trades, transport, and equipment operations being identified as experiencing the greatest needs.

For eligibility in the transport occupations category, candidates must meet the criteria of one of the Express Entry programs (Federal Skilled Worker Program, Canadian Experience Class, or Federal Skilled Trades Program) and have accumulated at least 6 months of continuous work experience in one of the listed transport occupations within the past 3 years. They must also fulfill all other requirements mentioned in the instructions for the round.

The transport occupations category includes ten occupations, such as aircraft assemblers and aircraft assembly inspectors, transport truck drivers, railway traffic controllers, marine traffic regulators, engineer officers in water transport, deck officers in water transport, air traffic controllers, air pilots, aircraft mechanics, railway carmen/women, and managers in transportation.

In terms of selection, IRCC will send invitations to eligible candidates in category-based draws to apply for permanent residence. The eligibility criteria include work experience in a specific transport occupation category of the National Occupational Classification (NOC), language proficiency in English or French, and education.

Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) scores will continue to play a central role in the category-based draws. The CRS ranks candidates in the Express Entry pool based on various factors such as age, education, language skills, and work experience. Candidates with top-ranking CRS scores who are also eligible for the category-based draw will receive invitations from IRCC to apply for permanent residence. It’s important to note that these category-based draws will occur alongside the general and program-specific draws, aiming to select candidates who can contribute to the Canadian labor market and economic goals

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