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Review of the year for category-based Express Entry drawings

On June 28, 2023, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) held its inaugural category-based draw.

category based express entry 2024

The Canadian immigration government unveiled this new draw type in May of last year as a means of drawing in talented immigrants in response to certain national workforce shortages and demographic issues.



Put another way, the IRCC decided to introduce this new form of Express Entry draw in order to entice foreign nationals to Canada who possess particular, in-demand skills and job experience.


Note: Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) scores continue to be taken into consideration for category-based draws, even though candidates with certain in-demand traits are given priority.


In particular, the IRCC has decided to use category-based draws to give preference to applicants with the following professional experience and language skills in 2024:


  • French-language proficiency

  • Science, Engineering, Technology and Mathematics (STEM) occupations

  • Trades occupations

  • Transport occupations

  • Agriculture and Agri-Food occupations

  • Healthcare occupations


Types of draws, frequency, and CRS ratings:


IRCC has carried out twenty-five category-based draws since the first one about a year ago.


Statistics show that there was significant variation in CRS cut-off scores when categorized.


Note: The lowest qualifying Express Entry profile score among all applicants who were invited to apply (ITA) for a particular Express Entry draw is displayed beside the cut-off scores. These results are significant because, in that particular draw, individuals who do not have a CRS score higher than the established cut-off will not be eligible for an ITA.


Date of Draw

Category

CRS Cut-Off Score

Number of ITAs Issued

June 28, 2023

Healthcare

476

500

July 5, 2023

STEM

486

500

July 6, 2023

Healthcare

463

1,500

July 7, 2023

French

439

2,300

July 12, 2023

French

375

3,800

August 2, 2023

French

435

800

August 3, 2023

Trades

388

1,500

September 20, 2023

Transport

435

1,000

September 27, 2023

French

472

500

September 28, 2023

Agriculture and Agri-Food

354

60


Total ITAs distributed:


The IRCC designated all six of these categories as priority for this new draw type; yet, in the previous year, the number of ITAs awarded to candidates in each category also differed significantly.

first ever Category based express entry draw canada

9,100 ITAs in healthcare

10,900 ITAs in STEM

Trades: 2,500 ITAs

Logistics: 2,645 ITAs

1,150 ITAs in agriculture and agri-food

21,100 ITAs are proficient in French.

What does the remainder of 2024 hold?


The IRCC had already disclosed its general strategy for allocating ITA among these six categories for 2024, according to an article published in April by CIC News.


In summary, the IRCC has reported that the percentage of ITAs that each category will receive this year is as follows, broken down by category.


15% in healthcare

STEM: 25%

Deals: 5%

Transportation: 3%

0.5% for Agriculture and Agri-Food

French linguistic competency: 30%


Note: According to the IRCC, candidates selected through category-based draws will receive 78.5% of all Express Entry ITAs, with the remaining 21.5% going to general draws held all year long.







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