Nova Scotia to Reopen Express Entry PNP Stream

Nova Scotia to Reopen Express Entry PNP Stream “In the Coming Weeks”

Nova Scotia to Reopen Express Entry PNP Stream

Nova Scotia to Reopen Express Entry PNP Stream

A popular Canadian immigration stream in Nova Scotia will reopen for the first time since 2015 “in the coming weeks,” the province has announced. The Nova Scotia Demand: Express Entry stream is part of the Nova Scotia Nominee Program (NSNP), and is one of two NSNP streams aligned with the federal government’s Express Entry immigration selection system.

The NSNP is one of Canada’s Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs), through which Canadian provinces may nominate individuals who are deemed to have the credentials to settle quickly.

Nova Scotia Demand: Express Entry is open to candidates in the Express Entry pool who also fulfil eligibility criteria for the stream. Successful applicants will receive 600 additional Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points, leading to an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for Canadian permanent residence at a subsequent draw from the pool.

Nova Scotia Demand: Express Entry will become the latest such stream to become active so far in 2017. Over recent months, Ontario, Saskatchewan, and British Columbia have also been particularly active in welcoming applications to their respective PNPs from candidates in the Express Entry pool.

Canada is aiming to bring in up to 51,000 new permanent residents through the PNPs in 2017, a seven percent increase on last year’s target. Many of these newcomers will arrive through ‘enhanced’ Express Entry streams.

Nova Scotia also announced that this stream may be paused and reopened periodically throughout the year until the annual allocation of spaces provided by the federal government is reached, allowing the province to process applications more efficiently. A similar strategy was recently implemented by Ontario for its own Express Entry-aligned Human Capital Priorities stream.

“This announcement from Nova Scotia will surely galvanise candidates in the pool,” says Attorney David Cohen.

“Nova Scotia Demand: Express Entry has previously operated on a first-come, first-served model, meaning that there is no ‘Expression of Interest’ or registration stage. This, combined with the fact that the stream is likely to open and pause intermittently, means that candidates who prepare in advance are more likely to be able to submit a complete application than those who do not.”

Eligibility

To apply, candidates must:

  • Have an active profile registered in Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s Express Entry system;
  • Have at least one year of skilled work experience in one of Nova Scotia’s target occupations;
  • Have at least a Canadian high school credential or international equivalent;
  • Prove language ability in English or French at Canadian Language Benchmark 7 or better;
  • Score 67 points or more on the stream’s points assessment grid; and
  • Show enough financial resources to successfully settle in Nova Scotia.

Targeted occupations

For the most recent application cycle, which took place in 2015, the following occupations were included on the targeted occupations list. This list may change for the upcoming cycle.

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Lottery system for parent, grandparent reunification unfair

Lottery system for parent, grandparent reunification unfair

Lottery system for parent, grandparent reunification unfair

Lottery system for parent, grandparent reunification unfair

The federal government’s new lottery for parent and grandparent sponsorship has made a bad situation worse, says Toronto immigration lawyer Matthew Jeffery.

Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) unveiled the new process after several years of operating on a first-come, first-served basis for the family reunification program. The new system allows anyone to submit their applications by a prescribed date, at which time 10,000 names are picked at random and invited to complete full sponsorship applications.

“For applicants, this is not a game of slots. Canadians who wish to sponsor their parents do it so that they can be closer to them in old age, and that opportunity should not be reduced to chance, Jeffery tells AdvocateDaily.com

The program once operated without any cap, but under the previous federal government led by Stephen Harper, it was shut down altogether between 2011 and 2014 to allow officials to catch up with the processing backlog.

It returned in 2014 with a 5,000-application limit, and in 2016, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government increased the annual quota to 10,000 applications. However, with demand still far exceeding the annual application limit, sponsors resorted to extraordinary measures to get to the front of the queue by hiring couriers to wait overnight ahead of the program’s opening day.

“Apparently, the government considered this unseemly, and decided to change to the lottery,” says Jeffery, who operates the immigration-focused Matthew Jeffery Barrister & Solicitor office in Toronto. “This solution does not make the program more equitable. In fact, by using the lottery, they have made it completely arbitrary. Under such circumstances, someone who qualifies may never be able to immigrate to Canada if they’re unlucky every year in the random draw. That’s unfair to them.”

While far from ideal, Jeffery says the first-come, first-served system at least provided sponsors with a degree of certainty about whether their applications would be accepted for processing. The change to the lottery also came without warning, which meant “frustration” for those preparing to apply under the old rules in 2017, Jeffery says.

Sponsor Daniel Dodera told the Toronto Star that he already paid more than $450 in mailing and courier fees to have his application hand delivered to IRCC’s Mississauga, Ont. processing centre as soon as it opened its doors in January.

“We missed the cut last time and we planned in advance this time. We are just totally disappointed. If the government was going to change the process, it should have let us know in June,” Dodero told the Star.

Jeffery says he would like to see the cap on applications removed, noting that more restrictive income requirements for sponsors have significantly reduced the number that qualify to bring parents and grandparents into the country.

“If that doesn’t get the number down to a reasonable level, the government can always tweak the rules a bit more by requiring sponsors to show a higher income over a longer period,” he says. “That kind of change would be more appropriate than the random system we have now.”

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Canada welcomes migrants, talent, ideas, says Immigration Minister

Canada welcomes migrants, talent, ideas, says Immigration Minister

Canada welcomes migrants, talent, ideas, says Immigration Minister

Canada welcomes migrants, talent, ideas, says Immigration Minister

Ahmed Hussein, Canadian Immigration Minister, said their country will keep continuing to attract skilled tech talent, although there seems to be an air of protectionism elsewhere in the world.

On a visit to Communitech, Hussen said on 24 April that they were open to ideas, migrants and talent. While interacting with representatives of companies such as Clear path Robotics and D2L, he said that he would not comment on the immigration policies that other countries have adopted.

As anti-immigrant and anti-free trade mood engulfs Europe and with uncertainty hovering over H-1B visa scheme in the US, he said that their government’s response was maintaining status quo in business by continuing with policies already in place or those intended to make it simpler for Canadian companies to employ skilled people they need to develop.

Hussen was quoted by Communitech News as saying that the express entry plan they had launched in Canada was prior to the US elections. He said that their country had always been aspirational in trying to attract the crème-de-la-crème. According to him, Global Skills Strategy, changes to express entry and the startup visa program were things that demonstrate they were continuing to work on.

The Canadian government, meanwhile, is slated to launch its Global Skills Strategy program on 12 June, which presents to participating employers an efficient procedure to enable run through worker applications for professions with skills shortages in just 10 days.

In addition, the government has committed $280 million over five years to launch the Temporary Foreign Worker Program and the International Mobility Program to allow companies of Canada to hire foreign workers.

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