Ontario, British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Manitoba hold PNP draws, this week

Ontario, British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Manitoba hold PNP draws, this week

Ontario, British Columbia, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba hold PNP draws, this week

Four provinces held Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) draws this week.

The PNP (as of the most recent immigration levels plan) is the primary entry point for economic immigrants into Canada. The program exists to help spread the benefits of immigration throughout Canada, as well as to assist provinces in addressing specific labor and demographic challenges.

The PNP also has Express Entry-aligned streams, which are referred to as enhanced PNP nominations. Candidates in these streams are accepted into the federal Express Entry pool. Candidates can apply to a specific province’s enhanced PNP streams and receive a provincial nomination or Notification of Interest based on their eligibility (NOI). Candidates will receive an additional 600 Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points from this point, almost certainly ensuring them an Initiation to Apply (ITA) to the specific enhanced PNP stream.

The fifth and sixth Express Entry draws of 2023 were recently held exclusively for candidates in enhanced PNP streams, with a total of 1,366 ITAs issued.

Results of Provincial Nominations—March 17–24


The Ontario PNP (OINP) held a Skilled Trades draw on March 23rd, issuing 746 NOIs to candidates with CRS scores ranging from 250-489. Candidates who received an NOI had created Express Entry profiles between March 23rd, 2022, and March 23rd, 2023.

Draws under the OINP’s economic streams are aimed at specific professions that have been specified in the OINP program updates.

The province of British Columbia

On March 21st, the British Columbia PNP (BCPNP) held a draw, issuing at least 254 NOIs to candidates across six streams.

The BCPNP held three targeted draws within the Skilled Worker International Graduate stream for early childhood educators and assistants, candidates in healthcare professions, and candidates in other jobs deemed suitable priority occupations. For Canada immigration, we can help you.


On March 23rd, the Manitoba PNP (MPNP) held a draw and issued 566 NOIs (known under the Manitoba PNP as Letters of Advice to Apply).

The following is a breakdown of NOIs issued by the stream:

Occupation-specific selection—266 NOIs, targeting candidates in specific, in-demand professions, with a minimum CRS score of 612; All occupations—200 NOIs, with consideration to profiles not selected in the specific profession draw, with a minimum CRS score of 672; \sInternational Education Stream—52 NOIs; and \sSkilled Worker Overseas stream—48 NOIs to candidates who were invited by the MPNP under a Strategic Recruitment Initiative, with a minimum CRS of 708.


The Saskatchewan PNP (SINP) held two draws on March 23rd, inviting candidates from both the Express Entry and Occupations in Demand streams.

NOIs were released to 184 Express Entry candidates with a minimum score of 82. In comparison, the Occupations in-demand stream issued 312 NOIs to candidates, with an 82 cut-off score. A candidate’s profession must NOT be on the SINP-excluded occupation list to be eligible for the Occupations in Demand stream.

In the future, a note on PNPs
As previously stated, the PNP is now the primary pathway for economic immigrants to Canada, and it is expected to play a larger role in Canadian immigration in the coming years.

In addition to the increased focus on the PNP, a recent meeting of the Forum of Ministers Responsible for Immigration (FMRI) emphasized the significance of these provincial programs. Following the meeting, it was announced that provincial immigration would now receive its multi-year levels plan, allowing provinces to understand and plan for their immigration allocation years in advance.

Furthermore, as a result of the meeting, many provinces saw an increase in future immigration allocations:

Alberta’s allocation dramatically increased this year, to 9,750 spots; Manitoba’s allocation for 2023 remains unchanged increased to 9,500 spots; Ontario noted an increase to 18,000 spots by 2025; and Saskatchewan will see an increase to 8,500 spots in 2025.

Recently Canada invites another 7,000 candidates in a surprise Express Entry draw

The IRCC has only just announced the eighth Express Entry draw for 2023.

In an all-program draw, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) issued invitations to apply (ITAs) to 7,000 candidates with a minimum Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score of 484. Candidates from the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), and the Federal Skilled Trades Program are considered in an all-program draw (FSTP).

This draw size is tied with the largest-ever all-program draw on March 15, which included 7,000 candidates. Candidates in that draw had a CRS score of at least 490. The previous record-high all-program draw was held on January 18, when IRCC invited 5,500 candidates.

The draw is surprising because it is the second week in a row that IRCC has invited Express Entry candidates. Usually, Express Entry draws are bi-weekly. In addition to it being tied for the largest all-program draw ever, the 7,000 ITAs marks the second-largest Express Entry draw size of all time, behind the record-setting CEC-only draw that took place in February 2021.

All draws took place between July and November 2022, with the smallest draw on July 6 inviting only 1,500 candidates. It was the first all-program draw after an 18-month hiatus caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Express Entry draws in early 2023 focused primarily on Provincial Nominee Program candidates (PNP). So far this year, there have been four PNP-only Express Entry draws, the most recent on March 1, when 667 PNP candidates were invited. Prior to this, there were three other PNP draws and one on February 2 that targeted candidates in the Federal Skilled Worker Program. However, it appears that IRCC has resumed its regular procedure of considering all Express Entry candidates.

PNP levels for multiple years have been approved by immigration ministers.

Provincial immigration ministers recently met as part of the Forum of Ministers Responsible for Immigration (FMRI) to discuss common issues and strategies for attracting and retaining more newcomers.

The meeting resulted in the approval of the first multi-year provincial immigration plan. This will function similarly to the federal Immigration Levels Plan, which specifies immigration targets for the next three years. The provinces will now know in advance how many provincial nominations they will receive and will be able to plan accordingly in terms of housing and infrastructure needs to better support and retain newcomers.Following the meeting, some provinces announced an increase in PNP allocations for this year compared to 2022. For example, Ontario, Canada’s largest province, will see their allocation increase to 18,000 spots in 2025. Manitoba’s allocation for 2023 has increased by 3,175 spaces from 2022 to 9,500, while Saskatchewan will receive 7,250 nominees in 2023, increasing to 8,500 in 2025.

Alberta will also see an increase in allocations for 2023, from 6,500 to 9,750 from 6,500 in 2022. Allocations will continue to rise over the next two years, reaching 10,849 by 2025 in Saskatchewan. Other provinces have yet to release information on the number of PNP allocations they expect.

Candidates for Express Entry can improve their chances of receiving obtaining an ITA through a provincial nomination (a process known as an enhanced nomination). Being nominated as an Express Entry candidate by a provincial capital automatically adds 600 points to a CRS score, essentially ensuring the candidate will receive an ITA for permanent residence.

Candidates for economic immigration who are not part of an Express Entry program can still be nominated by a province (base nomination). This can also help a candidate’s case for permanent residency.

IRCC provides yet another PGWP extension.
Many Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) holders seeking permanent residence were granted a reprieve by IRCC last week. Because of the recent irregularities in Express Entry draws, which have harmed PGWP holders eligible for the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), Immigration Minister Sean Fraser announced that PGWP holders will no longer be eligible for the CEC.

will be granted an 18-month Open Work Permit extension, which they can apply for on the IRCC website beginning April 6. This means that even more PGWP holders will be able to compete for Express Entry ITAs in the future. According to IRCC, there will be approximately 286,000 PGWP holders in Canada by the end of 2022.

What exactly is Express Entry?
The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP), and the Canadian Experience Class all use Express Entry as an application management system (CEC).

These programs enable IRCC to select candidates for permanent residence based on the Comprehensive Ranking System cut-off score (CRS). The CRS ranks all candidates in the Express Entry pool, and the candidates with the highest scores are awarded.

an application invitation (ITA). Candidates for the Provincial Nominee Program who receive invitations in a draw are already Express Entry candidates.

After receiving an ITA, a candidate has 60 days to submit their application to IRCC. An IRCC officer will then review the application and determine whether or not the applicant is approved.

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