The most recent Immigration Levels Plan 2024–2026, which was made public by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) on November 1, shows the gradual increase in admissions targets in Canada’s two main economic immigration channels.
Every year, this plan is unveiled, detailing the total number of permanent residents that Canada hopes to accept over the next three years, including those from economic, family, and refugee/humanitarian backgrounds.
The Immigration and Refugee Council of Canada (IRCC) has reaffirmed in this year’s plan that economic immigration programs will remain the main driver of Canada’s attempts to attain permanent residence. The 11* Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) of Canada and Express Entry will spearhead this effort.
*Every Canadian province and territory, with the exception of Quebec and Nunavut, operates PNPs.
Which program will be in charge of admissions for permanent residents in 2024 and 2026?
When Canada unveiled its 2023–2025 Immigration Levels Plan in November 2022, it was mentioned that PNP immigration targets had surpassed Express Entry targets as the country’s primary economic immigration route.
Across Canada, PNPs “invited a total of 83,500 new permanent residents (PRs) to Canada” last year. The Immigration Levels Plan for 2023–2025 also indicated that the PNP objective for the IRCC was expected to rise to 105,000 in 2023. After that, goals were established at 110,000 and 117,500 for 2024 and 2025, respectively.
As to the most recent Immigration Levels Plan (2024–2026) published by the Immigration and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), Express Entry is anticipated to regain its top position among economic immigration paths in Canada, but this is anticipated to occur only in 2024. According to current admissions targets, Canada’s PNPs are expected to rank highest among all economic immigration streams in this country for the years 2025 and 2026.
Note: Although immigration targets are subject to change, the information in this page is based on data that was available when the 2024–2026 ILP was first published.
Analyzing Canada Express Entry and PNP goals from the Immigration Levels Plan for 2024–2026
In particular, the 2024–2026 Immigration Levels Plan states that Canada aims to admit the following amount of people under Express Entry and PNPs:
Express Entry (Federal High Skilled): 110,770
Express Entry (Federal High Skilled): 117,500
Express Entry (Federal High Skilled): 117,500
What are the Provincial Nominee Program and Express Entry?
The two main economic immigration routes to Canada are briefly explained below.
The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP), and the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) are three distinct economic-class immigration programs for permanent residents. The federal government of Canada uses a system called Express Entry to jointly manage these applications.
Canada will be doing two distinct types of Express Entry draws as of late June 2023: “standard” draws and category-based draws.
In each “Standard” Express Entry draw, a limited number of applicants get Invitations To Apply (ITAs) for permanent residence in Canada. These draws primarily prioritize ranking individuals based on their Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score. If a candidate’s CRS score is higher above the threshold for that round of invites, they will receive an ITA.
Note: A Canadian immigration candidate may only apply for permanent residency in this nation through an ITA.
In addition, the Immigration and Refugee Committee of Canada (IRCC) started holding category-based draws on June 28 of this year in an effort to increase the number of immigration candidates who come to Canada with particular work experience or skills, enabling the nation to better handle certain labor market issues.
The IRCC has decided to give priority to the following six categories in 2023 through category-based draws:
- Fluency in French
- Work experience in the healthcare business
- Experience working in STEM fields
- Experience working in trade occupations
- Experience working in the transportation industry
- Work experience in the agriculture and agri-food industries
Provincial and territory governments can choose which immigrant applicants they believe will best assist their area in addressing certain labor market and economic difficulties by using PNPs.
Put another way, PNPs work to disseminate the advantages of immigration—economic, social, and cultural across the nation in an effort to encourage more people to immigrate to regions of Canada other than Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal.
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