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Category Archives: PNP

Survey: What Canadians think about family reunification during pandemic?

Canadian Immigration policy has been an integral component of the nation’s development, and debates in this area have consistently been framed in terms of deciding which immigrants should be included or excluded as part of expanding Canadian social framework. Over the past year a paradigmatic shift has occurred within the Canadian immigration, which has increasingly pushed for a stronger emphasis on the preferential entrance of economic migrants.

The Canadian Government is committed to keeping families together whenever possible by various generous family reunification programs like Family Class Sponsorship programs where in Canadian Citizens and Permanent Residents are eligible to sponsor family class members who wish to immigrate to Canada through programs such as spousal and common-law partner sponsorship, parent and grandparent sponsorship, parent and grandparent Super Visa and dependent child sponsorship.

A survey of 1,531 Canadians was conducted by Association of Canadian Studies which reveals that amid COVID-19 large numbers of Canadians support family reunification as one of the core immigration priorities over economic immigrants and expanding the refugee program. This is evident as nearly 36% of respondents stated that priority should be given to family members of people residing in Canada.

Canadians are affirmative about the role of immigrants in the recovery of Canada’s economy, as 61% Canadians agreed that immigration will support economic development, while 22% said that it would have a negative effect and 18% Canadians were not aware about the facts and stated that they cannot decide. Coast to coast among various provinces 67% of respondents from Atlantic Canada state that immigration would benefit while on the contrary 26% of the prairie provinces respondents were of the view that immigration would have a negative effect on the country’s economy and 22% respondents did not respond.

Alberta respondents were the most supportive of family reunification followed by 42% Atlantic Canada and 36% Ontario. The least support of combined 28% was demonstrated by respondents from Manitoba and Saskatchewan. Between 2016 and 2020, Canadian respondent’s support towards prioritizing economic class immigration stayed constant at 27%, while support for refugee class witnessed a drop of 13% as it fell from 29% to 16% among these years.  Manitoba with 70.2%, Saskatchewan at 68.6% and Quebec with 67.6% recorded the biggest decline among other provinces in admission of new immigrants in the second quarter of 2019 and 2020.

Canadians feel that IRCC should focus on expanding family reunification programs rather than making efforts towards attracting and admitting economic newcomers through the Federal Skilled Worker Program and Federal Skilled Trades Program, as well as by expanding the Provincial Nominee Programs, for investors, entrepreneurs, and self-employed.

Canadians feel that the Government is not working towards family reunification, and many family members are separated due to delay in processing of applications and travel restrictions during this pandemic. They suggest the proliferation of family reunification programs, as the current immigration strategy raises questions about the fairness, equity, and direction of Canada’s current approach to immigration for building the nation. In March, Immigration level plan for 2020-2022 was announced where economic class and refugee class levels were scheduled to increase yearly, but family class immigration was settled with a target of inviting 91,000 new immigrants.

COVID-19 has negatively affected the Canadian economy and immigration has faced the worst hit. All immigration programs are facing a cut back, but family class sponsorship has faced a set down of 78% in the second quarter of 2020 as opposed to last year. Along with this refugee resettlement witnessed an exponential fall of 85% and 52% drop back was noted in economic class immigration.

The COVID-19 pandemic has compelled policymakers to re-evaluate what kind of immigrant workforce the country needs, as people who were previously not considered as highly skilled or essential, are deemed as the front line workers today. Various internal and external factors should be considered when thinking about the future of Canada’s immigration system post coronavirus pandemic such as demographics, economy, labor market, politics, processing capacity and capacity to integrate newcomers.

Lately, Canada’s immigration minister stated that they viewed immigration as a crucial step to supporting the country’s post-coronavirus economic recovery after a meeting where they discussed the importance of attracting immigrants to rural Canadian communities and role of international students in Canadian economy.

Statistics Canada: CEC and PNP immigrants are better in Canadian job market

According to a study conducted by Statistics Canada & IRCC, CEC  and PNP immigrants are fare better than FSWP and QSWP in the job market as they have an edge due to Canadian work experience and pre-arranged employment from working as temporary foreign workers before obtaining permanent residency in Canada.

Economic immigration consists of numerous programs, including the Federal Skilled Worker program (FSWP), Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) and Canadian Experience Class (CEC). These programs help to select permanent residents based on the candidate’s potential ability to perform in the labour market. These programs are administered differently, have separate processes and selection criteria. During the initial years after immigration CEC and PNP immigrants have higher employment rates and earnings than FSWP immigrants although after five years of immigration PNP immigrants have lower earnings than CEC or FSWP immigrants.

Reason why PNP and CEC candidates fair better in Canadian job market?

The temporary foreign workers get a taste of real life in Canada before committing themselves and their families towards moving to Canada permanently by uprooting their lives in their home countries. This helps them to acclimatize in Canadian culture and perform better than other economic immigrants in the country.

In addition, immigrants with Canadian experience have significant benefits in labour market outcomes over immigrants without Canadian work experience, especially when it comes to high earning positions as many temporary foreign workers were international students in Canada who obtained a Post-Graduate Work Permit (PGWP) and have lived in the country for quite a few years before becoming a permanent resident. During this time, they not only improve their language proficiency but also develop the skills the Canadian employers are looking for.

The benefits of studying in Canada are endless, including obtaining a high-quality education, gaining Canadian work experience as well as having improved outcomes after becoming permanent residents of Canada as opposed to candidates from FSWP or QSWP. This is evident as 93% of immigrants selected from the PNP and 95% of immigrants selected from the CEC found employment in the first full year after becoming Canadian permanent residents, while only 80% for candidates under FSWP were employed for the first full year.

After becoming permanent residents in the first full year CEC immigrants earned 56 per cent more than FSWP candidates and this gap diminished over time as in the fifth year CEC immigrants earned 30% more than FSWP  immigrants. Similarly, PNP immigrants also earned higher than FSWP in the first year while by the fifth year their earnings substantially decreased. This is because PNP immigrants tend to have slow earnings growth as they are more likely to be selected for low-skilled or medium-skilled jobs. Nevertheless, FSWP immigrants easily get integrated into the Canadian labour market as they possess essential traits such as high language proficiency and education levels.

Labour market outcomes of Canadian work experience as opposed to pre-arranged jobs

Pre-arranged employment and work experience are among the valuable assets for new immigrants as both are considered as an essential criterion in Canada’s Express Entry system of economic immigration selection. On one hand, pre-arranged employment reflects the employer’s preference more clearly than Canadian work experience. On the other hand, Canadian work experience can better capture the recognized market values of skills than pre-arranged employment.

During the first two years after becoming permanent residents, immigrants with pre-arranged jobs earned 15% more than those without as they had comparative higher income in Canada before becoming permanent residents which is almost double of what immigrants with Canadian work experience earn. Even under Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) immigration applicants who have a pre-arranged job offer avail 50 to 200 additional points depending on the NOC and seniority of the position offered.

To conclude, prior to immigration, Canadian work experience is a better predictor of immigrant earnings after becoming permanent residents as opposed to having a pre-arranged job.

Half of new skilled immigrants possess Canadian experience

Over the last few years, more immigrants are gaining permanent residence with Canadian work and study experience. As indicated by Statistics Canada, the number of temporary foreign workers and students grew exponentially between the year 2000 and 2018. In 2000, 12% of new economic immigrant principal applicants had worked in Canada before obtaining permanent residency while this share increased to 59% in the year 2018.

The introduction of the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) in 2009 and increasing Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) has led to more temporary foreign workers becoming permanent residents of Canada.  In 2018 CEC admitted 20% of all economic-class principal applicants while the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) and PNPs admitted 25% and 46% respectively.

The advent of Covid-19 pandemic and global travel restrictions have reduced the flow of immigrants to and from Canada, which has increased Canada’s reliability on temporary foreign workers already residing in the country to fulfill their immigration needs. This has also increased the importance of temporary foreign workers in the selection and labour market outcomes of new immigrants in Canada. In 2018, 46% of new economic immigrants were former temporary foreign workers, up from 8% in 2000 according to Statistics Canada.

The “two-step” immigration selection process accounts for the journey of immigrants who arrive in the country as workers or students and then become a permanent resident. In this process

  • Firstly, students or skilled migrants get temporary residence and gain valuable Canadian experience.
  • Secondly, the temporary residents apply for immigration and are selected based on the criteria outlined in Canada’s federal or provincial immigration programs.

This 2-step process improves the match between immigrant skills and labour market demands as employers can directly assess the skills and intangible qualities of the temporary worker. It is evident that the coronavirus pandemic has highlighted potential issues related with dependence on temporary foreign workers, such as labour supply uncertainty, and poor working conditions for employees.

The two-step immigration selection has evolved from 60,000 to 429,300 number of temporary foreign workers between 2000 and 2018.

According to a study conducted by  Statistics Canada, it was discovered that the percentage of new immigrants who were hired in the first full year after immigration rose substantially from 81% to 87% between 2000 to 2016 among men in the age group of 20 to 54 years and among women from 61 % to 67 %. The study also recognized this increase in employment relevant to the growing share of new immigrants with Canadian work experience, who having worked and lived in the country as either temporary foreign workers or international students.

Immigrants who have worked in Canada before immigration had considerable benefits in labour market outcomes over immigrants without Canadian work experience, especially when it comes to high earning positions. Comparably, economic immigrants who landed from 2000 to 2005 and had Canadian experience before immigration earned 4.2 times more than immigrants without Canadian work experience in the first full year after immigration, 2.6 times more in the 5th year, and additional 2.1 in the 10th year.

In a holistic view, immigrants with Canadian experience are finding more employment options and making more annual earnings due to initiatives taken by federal governments in creating more pathways for foreigners with Canadian experience.

Lastly, the COVID-19 pandemic has compelled policymakers to re-evaluate what kind of immigrant workforce the country needs, as people who were previously not considered as highly skilled or essential, are deemed as the frontline workers today.

IRCC invited only PNP candidates in latest express entry draw

A total of 557 candidates who had already received an additional 600 points with a provincial nomination were invited to apply for Canadian permanent residence in the Express Entry draw which took place on July 22, 2020. The cut-off CRS score in this draw was 687 which is lowest CRS requirement for a PNP-specific draw so far in 2020. This is the 9th PNP specific draw since Canada implemented travel restrictions in March this year for stopping spread of coronavirus. IRCC has now invited 54,357 candidates so far this year.

The candidates who received an ITA in this draw had previously received provincial nominations and were awarded an additional 600 points toward their overall score. This means candidates who received an ITA would have needed a CRS score of at least 87 for their human capital without the provincial nomination.

Express Entry is the application process for skilled workers in Canada or Overseas who want to settle in Canada permanently. Interested Candidates are required to submit an online application to express their interest by creating Express Entry (EE) profile and, providing information about their skills, work experience, language ability, education and some other details. After submitting the profile, candidates get a score to determine their place in the pool using the point-based system called Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). The CRS system considers skills, work experience, language ability, education and other factors (e.g. having a sibling in Canada, Canadian education or a valid job offer in Canada, etc.) to award points. Highest ranking candidates from Express Entry pool are regularly invited to apply for Canadian Permanent Residence. Express Entry manages applications for permanent residence under these federal economic immigration programs:

The Provincial Nominee Class (PNC) allows provincial and territorial governments to choose immigrants according to the economic needs of the province or territory. Nine Canadian provinces and two territories have provincial nominee programs which:

  • establish its own standards and processes by which it chooses its nominees,
  • try to nominate those candidates who would be most likely to settle effectively into the economic and social life of the region.

PNC has two (2) steps

  1. First apply to the province or territory where you want to live and be nominated
  2. After a province or territory nominates you, you must apply to IRCC for permanent residence. An IRCC officer will then assess your application based on Canadian immigration rules.

Each participating province and territory have at least one immigration stream that is connected to the Express Entry system and allows it to nominate Express Entry candidates for permanent residence in that province or territory. Express Entry candidates who are nominated by a province or territory receive an additional 600 points toward their CRS score, moving them to the front of the line for an invitation to apply for Canadian permanent residence.

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Canadian immigration pathways for tech workers

Canada’s tech sector has been booming in the recent years. Technology is evolving rapidly, and Canada has quickly established itself as a leader in the emerging IT sector. More and more tech workers are immigrating to Canada in search of new employment opportunities and there is no secret why?

Canada offers various ways to immigrate as a tech talent, including programs which offer Canadian permanent residency. Even with the advent of coronavirus pandemic, this sector remains strong with companies actively recruiting talent around the globe.

Canada is helping to make it easier for businesses in the technology sector to recruit top talent. Whether candidates wish to move to Canada on a permanent or temporary basis, the following are key options are to consider:

Express Entry

Express Entry is a system used by the Canadian Government to manage Canadian permanent residence applications for filling labor gaps through certain economic immigration programs. It is an extremely popular option for global tech talent looking to immigrate to Canada. Tech workers are the main occupational group of immigrants who move to Canada through Express Entry.

If you are a tech worker who has not lived in Canada before, the best option for being eligible for Express Entry is through the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP). The FSWP accounts for nearly half of all individuals who obtain an Invitation to Apply (ITA).

Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) applications are assessed based on an applicant’s ability to become economically established upon immigration to Canada. This is a key category in Canada’s Express Entry (EE) immigration system.

Minimum program requirements: To qualify under this program, the applicant must:

  • Have at least one year of continuous full-time or equivalent paid work experience in the past 10 years in a skilled occupation (National Occupational Classification skill lever 0, A or B); or Qualify for an  Arranged Employment in Canada (AEO) with a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) for a full-time, permanent job offer from a Canadian employer;
  • Get a minimum level of CLB 7 or NCLC 7 for first official language in all 4 language areas (Reading, Writing, Speaking & Listening). To get points for the second official language, you must meet the minimum level of CLB 5 or NCLC 5 in all 4 language areas;
  • Have a Canadian educational or Educational Credential Assessment (ECA)for a foreign education.
  • In addition to fulfilling eligibility and points requirements, applicants must show that they have sufficient settlement funds to support themselves and their dependents after arrival in Canada

Important Points

  • The applicant(s) must obtain at least 67 points based on Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s (IRCC) immigration selection factors. The selection factors are as follows:

Education: 25 points | Language: 28 points | Work Experience: 15 points | Age: 12 points | Arrange Employment: 10 points | Adaptability: 10 points

  • The applicants must plan to reside outside the province of Quebec. The province of Quebec selects its own skilled workers through a unique immigration system.

Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)

Furthermore, the next best option for tech talent to immigrate to Canada is PNP. The Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) allow Canadian provinces and territories to nominate individuals who wish to immigrate to Canada and are interested in settling in a particular province.

Provinces and territories (PTs) that operate a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) can nominate candidates through the Express Entry pool, in addition to nominating foreign nationals to the existing paper-based process. PT nominations made via Express Entry are called “enhanced nominations” and enable each PT to increase its annual nomination space. Enhanced nominations are processed online and are subject to the six-month or less processing standard (in 80% of cases).

 Minimum program requirements: To qualify under this program, the applicant must:

Important Points

  • Candidates who have a PT nomination receive an additional 600 points in the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), which is usually sufficient to trigger an invitation to apply (ITA) at the next round of invitations.
  • PTs have direct access to the Express Entry pool through a dedicated portal that allows them to view and nominate candidates in the pool.
  • Once a nomination has been issued by a PT and accepted by a candidate, it cannot be cancelled in the candidate’s Express Entry profile. Should the candidate change their mind, or the PT withdraw the nomination after acceptance of the nomination, the candidate must cancel their Express Entry profile and submit a new profile in their online account.

Tech is a significant area of need, which is why some provinces operate tech worker streams, the most notable programs are offered by the provinces of Ontario and British Columbia.

The Ontario Tech Pilot is for workers who have experience in one of six tech occupations and have crated their Express Entry profile. In 2020 Ontario has held two Tech Pilot draws, including one during the pandemic, in May, under which over 700 candidates received invitations for a provincial nomination.

The demand for talent in B.C.’s tech sector is increasing faster than supply. British Columbia Tech Pilot invites immigration candidates to apply for a provincial nomination on an almost weekly basis if the candidates have a job offer in one of 29 tech occupations. In 2020, the province has held 14 tech draws, including earlier this month, with over 1,500 people receiving provincial nominations so far this year.

Start-Up Visa

The Canadian government also operates the Start-up Visa program. This program grants permanent residence to immigrant entrepreneurs while assisting them to become established in Canada. It is a popular option for tech talent and has significantly different selection criteria from other skilled worker programs.

The program encourages immigrant entrepreneurs to grow their companies in Canada. Under this program successful candidates need to be endorsed by a Canadian government designated entity such as an angel investor, venture capital firm, or business incubator, who are in turn responsible for supporting the entrepreneur’s success once they come to Canada.

Eligibility requirements of the program: To be eligible for the Start-up Visa Program, the applicant must:

  • Have a qualifying business
  • Get a letter of support from a designated organization
  • Meet the language requirements
  • Bring enough money to settle
  • Pass Canadian security and medical clearances
  • Plan to settle in a province other than the Province of Quebec 

Qualifying Business: A qualifying business means you created a business that meets the following conditions:

  • At the time you get a commitment from a designated organization:
    • Each applicant holds 10% or more of the voting rights attached to all shares of the corporation outstanding at that time (up to 5 people can apply as owners)


  • Applicants and the designated organization jointly hold more than 50% of the total voting rights attached to all shares of the corporation outstanding at that time
  • At the time you receive your permanent residence:
    • You provide active and ongoing management of this business from within Canada
    • An essential part of the operations of the business happens in Canada
    • This business is incorporated in Canada 

Designated Organization

The applicant must get a letter of support from a designated organization. Designated organizations are business groups (venture capital funds, angel investor groups, and business incubator organizations) that are approved to invest in or support possible start-ups through the Start-up Visa Program. Successful applicants are required to secure a minimum investment for their Canadian start-up. If coming from a designated Canadian venture capital fund, the investment must be at least $200,000 CAD. If coming from an angel investor group, it should be at least $75,000 CAD. Applicants do not need to secure any investment from a business incubator. However, applicants must be accepted into a Canadian business incubator program.

Applicants are not required to invest any of their own money. If their Canadian start-up is unsuccessful, individuals granted permanent residence through this program will retain their permanent resident status. 

Language Requirements

The applicant must meet the minimum level of the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 5 in either English or French in all four areas (speaking, reading, listening & writing). 

Enough money to settle in Canada

The Government of Canada does not give financial support to new start-up visa immigrants. An applicant is required to give proof that he/she has the sufficient money to support themselves and dependents after their arrival in Canada. 

Global Talent Stream 

Apart from permanent residency programs, Canada offers many temporary resident pathways for tech workers who are looking for a faster pathway to migrate before submitting a permanent residence application or do not wish to settle permanently in Canada. Immigration programs such as the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) are meant to support the process of temporary residents seeking permanent residency in the country.

One of the more notable temporary visa options is the Global Talent Stream. It enables Canadian employers to hire tech talent and bring them to Canada in about a month. The Global Talent Stream is one component of Canada’s Global Skills Strategy which has facilitated the arrival of over 40,000 tech workers to the country since 2017. 


The COVID-19 pandemic is having a major impact on travel to Canada, but the country is still enabling temporary visa holders to enter the country for work. Invitations to successful immigration candidates are also progressing since Canada is planning to welcome them into the country once the pandemic has subsided. As a holistic view, Canada remains open to global tech talent who wish to call this country their new home.

With so many tech jobs and immigration opportunities, you may be unsure of where to start? Contact us and book a consultation!