Ontario tech draw will provide a way for tech workers in 6 occupations to permanently reside.
The Government of Ontario has disclosed its plans to nominate for Canadian permanent residence Express Entry applicants with work experience in the technology industry.
Ontario had earlier announced that a dedicated stream for tech employees would be created. Instead, through its existing Human Capital Priorities Stream, it will hold targeted draw for Express Entry candidates with work experience in six tech-related occupations.
The Express Entry Program is the primary source of qualified employees in Canada and manages the Federal Skilled Worker Class, Federal Skilled Trades Class and Canadian Experience Class pool of applicants.
Based on results given under the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), eligible applicants for these programs are entered in the Express Entry pool.
The CRS score of a candidate is based on factors including age, education, qualified work experience and English or French language skills.
Express Entry applicants with a provincial nomination earn an extra 600 points for their CRS rating, efficiently guaranteeing an invitation to apply for permanent residence in Canada or ITA.
For fresh permanent residents in Canada, including those admitted through the Express Entry program, Ontario is the most common destination. In 2018, 65% of fresh immigrants admitted via Express Entry had Ontario as their province of destination.
Applicants must first create an Express Entry profile to be considered for an invitation through an OINP tech draw.
Tech-focused draw interest is high in Ontario, home to significant tech hubs in Toronto, Ottawa, and Kitchener-Waterloo towns.
Ontario, like the remainder of Canada, is presently experiencing a shortage of tech employees. It is estimated that the information and communication technology industry in Canada will require up to 220,000 qualified employees by 2021.
The OINP utilizes its Human Capital Priorities Stream to search for applicants matching federal and provincial requirements in the Express Entry pool.
For eligible candidates with work experience in one of six targeted occupations, OINP tech draws will search the Express Entry pool:
NOC is the National Occupational Classification, which determines the level of skill and type of skill of an occupation.
Based on consultations with employers and other stakeholders across the province, the OINP said the six occupations represent present requirements in Ontario and were chosen.
The Human Capital Priorities Stream does not involve a work offer and has a history of inviting CRS ratings from Express Entry applicants that were not high enough for an ITA in one of the periodic Express Entry draws from the federal government.
Express Entry applicants chosen by the OINP will obtain an interest notification from the OINP and have 45 days to apply for an Ontario provincial nomination.
Ontario gets an annual nomination grant through the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) of the federal government. In each of the last six years, Ontario’s allocation under the PNP has grown to 6,900 for 2019.
Admissions of new permanent residents through the PNP are expected to continue to grow in 2020 and 2021, as are admissions through the Express Entry system’s three programs.
Overall, between now and 2021, Canada could welcome more than one million newcomers.
“Ontario’s tech draw are a major innovation and a excellent chance for applicants for Express Entry,” said David Cohen, senior partner with Montreal’s Campbell, Cohen Canadian Immigration Law firm.
“Ontario has shown a desire to invite reduced scoring Express Entry applicants through its Human Capital Priorities Stream, so we’re going to keep a close eye on these tech draw to see if that’s going on.”