Abramovich & Tchern Immigration Lawyers are pleased to provide you with a weekly news review. In this week’s blog, we covered a range of topics, including the new Express Entry draw, provincial nominee program draws, and legislative changes coming into effect. Follow us on our social media to stay up to date on the latest news in Canadian immigration.
The Canadian government lifted all COVID-related travel restrictions
On September 26, 2022, the Canadian government lifted all entry restrictions for all individuals travelling to Canada. As of October 1st, 2022, travellers will no longer be required to submit public health information through ArriveCAN, nor provide proof of vaccination. There is also no need to undergo pre- or on-arrival testing, follow quarantine or isolation procedures, monitor and document symptoms of COVID-19 upon arrival in Canada, undergo health checks for air travel and rail, as well as wear masks on planes and trains.
The precautionary measures for cruises have also been lifted. This means that passengers will no longer be required to take pre-board tests, get vaccinated, or use ArriveCAN. Although a set of guidelines remain to protect those onboard, they will align with the approach used in the US. If you are feeling sick or have symptoms of COVID-19, travelling is not advised. If you fall ill while travelling and are still sick upon arrival to Canada, inform a flight attendant, cruise staff member, or border services officer right away. A quarantine officer may assess the traveller to see if they need further medical evaluation for COVID-19, as it is still classified as a communicable disease in the Quarantine Act.
Canada invited 3,750 candidates under the new all-program Express Entry draw
On September 28, 2022, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) held a new all-program Express Entry draw and invited 3,750 high-skilled candidates. The draw focused on Express Entry candidates with scores of 504 and above. This was the 7th all-program Express Entry draw of the year. With this latest invitation round, a total of 28,038 Express Entry candidates have been invited to apply for Canadian permanent residence in 2022. Since the renewal of the all-program draws, IRCC is gaining momentum and gradually increasing the number of invitees in one round.
The Express Entry system was created in 2015 to improve the efficiency of Canada’s economic immigration programs. Express Entry manages the pool of candidates for three of Canada’s main economic immigration programs — the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Federal Skilled Trades Program, and the Canadian Experience Class. Candidates are awarded points based on various factors such as age, education, work experience, and whether they have a valid job offer. The minimum score required to receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) has fluctuated throughout the year, with a low of 504 points. The highest score to receive an ITA in the Express Entry draw for this year was 808 points. If you qualify for any of the programs managed by Express Entry and need help with your application, get in touch with one of our qualified immigration lawyers.
Canada introduced a new pathway for healthcare workers
On September 23, 2022, the Government of Canada unveiled a new path to permanent residence for healthcare professionals who had difficulty obtaining it under Express Entry. Foreign-born physicians working in the fee-for-service model with public health authorities will no longer be required to fulfill current criteria. This change recognizes the unique employment model used in Canada’s healthcare system and provides access to Canadian economic permanent residence programs, so that prospective immigrants who are already here can stay and work.
Canadian provinces also started to ease the recognition of foreign-trained health professionals. The Nurses Association of New Brunswick implemented a simplified licensing process for French-licensed nurses wishing to obtain a licence in the province more quickly. The government’s health plan, Stabilizing Health Care: An Urgent Call to Action, aims to establish an integrated health system that provides timely and improved medical care to New Brunswickers. The plan also includes raising awareness of foreign-trained health professionals’ credentials. The initiative is based on a long-standing collaboration in Quebec to discover competent professional organizations from France and assist them to speed up the licensing procedure.
OINP held new draws under the Employer Job Offer and Human Capital Priorities Streams
On September 27, Ontario held a new draw in the Employer Job Offer: Foreign Worker Stream (EJO FW) Stream of the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) and issued 3 targeted invitations to apply (ITAs) to candidates under the federal Economic Mobility Pathways Project (EMPP). On September 28, the OINP invited Tech candidates under the Human Capital Priorities Stream and issued 1,179 targeted invitations to candidates with work experience in one of the in-demand occupations. In total, Ontario invited 17,451 candidates in 2022.
The OINP is one of the many ways available to individuals interested in immigrating to Canada. The OINP is a great option for those with skills and experience in certain occupations who wish to live and work in the province of Ontario. It is open to both skilled workers and international students. The program is designed to help skilled workers find employment in their field of expertise and to help employers fill labour shortages in specific occupations. If you also decided to apply for the OINP, our team of experienced immigration lawyers can help you with the application process.
Saskatchewan invited skilled candidates and Alberta introduced a new update
On September 28, Saskatchewan conducted held the largest draw in the Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program (SINP) and invited 1,146 candidates under the Express Entry and Occupations In-Demand categories. In this draw, the province invited skilled candidates under 82 NOCs. In 2022, the Government of Saskatchewan invited 9,710 candidates. The SINP is an economic immigration program that selects candidates who can contribute to the Saskatchewan economy and society. The province has an increasing demand for skilled workers in certain occupations. The SINP is aligned with the federal Express Entry system, which manages the profiles of candidates. It is a way for the province to identify potential immigrants who may have the skills and experience that are in-demand in Saskatchewan.
The Government of Alberta updated the inventory of the Alberta Advantage Immigration Program (AAIP). According to the latest statistics, there were around 1,120 Alberta Opportunity Stream applications and 270 Expressions of Interest in the Alberta Express Entry pool. In 2022, the AAIP nominated 4,904 applicants and invited 2,320 candidates. The AAIP has also updated its residency requirements for applicants of the Alberta Opportunity Stream. Work permit holders under the Canada-Ukraine Authorization for Emergency Travel (CUAET) are now eligible to apply for permanent residence status in Alberta. The Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP) applicants who graduated from an Alberta Advanced Education publicly funded post-secondary institution, and those who possess open work permits issued under the public policy for Hong Kong graduates are also eligible to apply for permanent residence under the Alberta Opportunity Stream.
Canada’s population reaches 40 million people
According to Statistics Canada’s data published on September 28, 2022, the population of Canada has risen to 38,929,902 people. Within the previous decade, Canada’s population increased from 33,476,688 to 38,929 902 persons. Canada’s population is exploding owing to international migration, with an unprecedented number of people coming to Canada to work and study. In the second quarter of 2022 alone, 118,114 additional immigrants arrived in Canada – the greatest figure on record. With 157,310 non-permanent residents arriving in 2022, this trend shows no indication of abating anytime soon.
The Canadian population is getting older as the baby boomer generation enters retirement age. The number of people aged 65 and over has risen from 4.7 million in 2012 to 5.6 million in 2022, an increase of nearly 20%. This trend is expected to continue, with the senior population projected to reach 9.5 million by 2036. Thus, the Federal Government increases immigration caps to help meet the needs of an aging population.
British Columbia invited skilled immigrants and Tech candidates
On September 27, 2022, British Columbia invited qualified Skills Immigration candidates and Tech workers under the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BCPNP). The province continues issuing targeted invitations to meet the needs of regional and local economies. At the time of this invitation, a total of 7,466 candidates had been invited to apply for a provincial nomination, and 2,301 of them were issued for BCPNP Tech candidates.
The BCPNP is an accelerated pathway to Canadian permanent residence for certain skilled and qualified foreign workers which is constantly evolving in order to meet the needs of British Columbia’s economy. Under the program, candidates are nominated based on their skills, experience, and other factors that contribute to their economic success in the province. Those who receive a provincial nomination from British Columbia are able to apply for Canadian permanent residence through IRCC. The BCPNP is an important part of British Columbia’s economic success, and the province is committed to making sure the program meets the needs of both employers and workers. If you think you might be eligible for the BCPNP, or if you are an employer interested in hiring foreign workers, contact us today to find out more.
Abramovich & Tchern Immigration Lawyers is a full-service law firm providing legal immigration services. Our immigration lawyers have extensive experience in all areas of immigration law and can provide you with the knowledgeable, experienced, and personal service you deserve. Our firm has successfully represented clients from all over the world in a variety of immigration matters, including family-based petitions, investor visas, asylum applications, removal proceedings, appeals, and naturalization proceedings. We are dedicated to providing our clients with the highest quality of legal representation and customer service. We understand that the immigration process can be complex and confusing, and we are here to help you navigate the process and achieve your immigration goals.