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The Evolution of Express Entry Draws: Insights for Express Entry in 2024

Express Entry Draw in 2024

In 2023, IRCC Invited 110,266 candidates vs the 82,880 target through 42 express entry draws to apply for permanent residence. Let's dive into what happened and what we can expect to see in 2024.

But First, What is Express Entry?

The Express Entry provides a pathway to permanent residence for skilled workers in Canada or overseas.

Candidates in the express entry pool are invited to apply for Permanent residence if they meet the minimum cut-off in any given draw. The table below shows a comprehensive list of all 42 draws in 2023.

Table 1: 2023 Express Entry Draws

Express Entry draw of 2023 highlight

The category Based Draws

In 2023, a significant shift occurred with the introduction of category-based selection. will be focusing on Express Entry candidates who have a strong French language proficiency or work experience in the following fields: These categories are:

  • Strong French proficiency

  • Healthcare

  • Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) professions

  • Trades, such as carpenters, plumbers, and contractors

  • Transport

  • Agriculture and agri-food

The first Draw occurred on June 28th and throughout the year IRCC Went on to conduct 17 Category-based draws.

Table 2: Summary of all Draws held in 2023

Summary of Express Entry Draw in 2023

Highlights  Of Express Entry Draw in 2023

There were 42 express entry draws in 2023

  • 19 All Programs ( No Program Specified) accounted for 70% (76,700 candidates) of the total number of applicants invited

  • 17 Category Based

  • 5 Provincial Nomination Program Draw 

  • 1 Federal Skilled Worker Draw

  • No Federal Skilled Trade -specific Draw

  • No Canadian Experience Class -specific Draw

  • The lowest Cut-off 354 in the Agri-food category

  • March 2023 stood out as a milestone month, witnessing the highest number of Invitations to Apply (ITAs) in a single draw – a total of 21,667 ITAs

  • Overall Category based draws saw lower cut-off than the “ No program Specified Draws

Table 3: Express Entry Pool Candidates and CRS scores as of December 2023

Number of pool in the express entry as at Dec 2023

As seen in Table 3, the highest number of candidates are in the CRS score ranges of:

  • 451-500 - 56,223

  • 401-450 - 53,698

  • 351-400 - 58,033

On November 1, 2023, IRCC released the 2024-2026 Immigration Levels Plan, which set the target for the number of permanent resident admissions to Canada for the next three years. Canada will admit

  • 485,000 new permanent residents in 2024 (same as 2023) and

  • 500,000 annually in 2024 and 2025.

The Levels Plan shows that in 2024, Canada will admit

  • 110,770 Express Entry candidates and

  • 117,500 in both 2025 and 2026.

According to the federal government, the plan would stabilize the number of newcomers arriving in Canada, which has been a matter of concern for many Canadians, given the affordability issues facing the country, particularly around housing. IRCC’s minister says that the new plan is comprehensive and will help achieve a balance between Canada’s labor force needs and ensuring Canada’s existing population is supported.

Potential Express Entry-Related Update 

  1. With the introduction of Category-based draws, there is a possibility that the minister will change the current categories for category-based selection. This depends on the findings in IRCC’s yearly report to Parliament and feedback from IRCC stakeholders such as provincial and territorial governments and settlement services. Where stakeholders will evaluate the areas of great labour shortages and how 

  2. Provincial Programs will make up the largest number of Candidates & there will be new PNP targets in 2024.

Who has the highest chance of receiving an ITA 

Based on the trend in 2023 and the number of applicants in the express entry pool as at December 2023, here are our predictions for candidates that would have the highest chance of receiving an ITA

  1. French Language Proficiency Candidates: There were 6 French category-based draw in 2023. The highest of any category and also had one of the lowest cut off in the 370s. French Language Canada is looking to bulk up its Francophone cultural identity due to the decrease in the percentage of Francophones outside Quebec and the slow growth in the bilingualism rate of English-speaking Canadians outside Quebec. 2023 saw the introduction of new requirements for a policy on Francophone immigration through the modernization of Canada’s Official Languages Act. This gave rise to the French language proficiency category-based selection rounds. This Category had a number of rounds

  2. Candidates in the existing 6 Categories or New Categories that IRCC will establish: In half a year since implementation, there were 17 draws almost more than all programs draw. These categories also had the lowest cut-offs

  3. Candidates with Provincial Nomination: With an additional 600 points the provincial program nomination, you will be way above the cut-off in any draw based on the various cut-off seen in 2023.

  4. Candidates with CRS score 480s  & above: In 2023, the lowest cut-off in 19 draws that brought in over 76000 candidates was 481. Therefore, if you are looking for what the perfect CRS should be, we would advise that you aim for 480s and above.

Looking to get a head start on your 2024 immigration journey or want to stay informed about Express Entry draws and immigration policies? Visit the official IRCC website or book a consultation with one of our licensed immigration professionals who can provide personalized advice based on your specific situation.


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