Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has begun initiating a variety of changes that will affect all newcomers to Canada in 2024.
As announced in the Immigration Levels Plan for 2024-2026, Canada aims to welcome a total of 485,000 permanent residents (PRs) in 2024. Alongside this increased level of immigration, Canada is expected to launch updates across various programs and leverage Artificial Intelligence (AI) to streamline the client experience.
Updates to the Express Entry System
In 2023, IRCC began conducting category-based Express Entry draws. These draws were implemented to help Canada find foreign nationals best suited to address the country’s most pressing labour gaps and demographic needs.
In the first year of category-based draws, IRCC chose to prioritize the following categories of immigration candidates.
- Those with French language proficiency
- Those with recent work experience in any of the following five industries: Healthcare; Science, Engineering, Technology and Mathematics (STEM); Trades, Transport and Agri-Food/Agriculture
In 2024, IRCC is expected to continue with category-based draws. However, the department has made it clear that they will reassess the focus categories chosen for 2023 and potentially alter them based on the changing needs of Canada’s labour market. This means that new sectors and proficiencies may be chosen as areas of focus by IRCC, potentially enabling new groups of newcomers to be eligible for category-based Express Entry draws this coming year.