Applying for permanent residence in Canada during the coronavirus contagion may seem like an ill-timed undertaking to most. Understandable, given Canada’s recent announcement regarding additional international travel restrictions as well as IRCC’s reduced processing capacity. However, for foreign nationals considering applying for permanent residence in Canada, 2021 may well represent the most advantageous time to act.

According to recent figures published by IRCC concerning the latest Express Entry draw conducted on February 13, 2021, Canada issued 27,322 invitations to apply under the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), easily the largest number of invitations issued by IRCC since the Express Entry program was established. In context, the largest number of invitations issued by IRCC prior to February 13, 2021 was 5,000.  Even more surprising, the February 13th draw included the lowest Comprehensive Ranking Score (CRS) ever recorded in the program’s history at just 75 points. To put that number in perspective, the last CEC candidate draw for which results are available was on June 25, 2020, whereby the average CRS score was 431. Coincidentally, prior to February 13, 2021, the June 25th draw was the lowest CRS score ever recorded under the CEC. Whether the February 13, 2021 draw is an outlier remains to be seen; however, Canada is desperately seeking to make up for the significant loss of labour, talent and immigration due to the global effects of COVID-19.

If you are thinking of applying for permanent residence in Canada, or for any other Canadian immigration-related matter, please reach out to us.

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