Canada’s Express Entry score requirement dropped below 500 points for the first time in almost two years.
The latest all-program Express Entry invitation draw, held on October 26, had a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score threshold of 496 points.
4,750 candidates from the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) and the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) were invited to apply for Canadian immigration in this round of the draw.
The CRS cutoff score of 496 points is the lowest since December 2020, when the score requirement was 468 points.
Lowering the CRS score threshold allows Canada to invite more immigration candidates, as was seen in the previous draws where the number of candidates increased as the CRS score gradually decreased.
Canada paused invitation rounds consisting of all eligible programs under Canada’s Express Entry system in December 2020 due to a backlog of permanent residency applications caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
During the pause, only candidates belonging to the CEC or Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) were issued invitations to apply (ITAs) for Canadian immigration.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) then also paused CEC invitation rounds in September 2021.
However, all-program invitation draws resumed after 18 months, with this latest iteration being the ninth all-program invitation round held by IRCC since July 6.
The latest round also marks the first time since draws resumed that the score requirement dropped below 500 points.
Express Entry is Canada’s application management system for three federal immigration programs: the FSWP, FSTP and CEC.
Candidates’ profiles are awarded points based on a number of factors, including age, education, work experience and English proficiency.
IRCC reviews the profiles, with the highest scoring candidates invited to apply for permanent residency in Canada.