New Canada Express Entry draw continues record low start to 2018

New Canada Express Entry draw continues record low start to 2018

New Canada Express Entry draw continues record low start to 2018

New Canada Express Entry draw continues record low start to 2018

CRS cut-off score of 444 in latest Express Entry draw and 2,750 candidates invited to apply

The Government of Canada has invited 2,750 Express Entry candidates to apply for permanent residence in a draw that took place January 24.

The Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) cut-off score for this draw was 444, a reduction of two points from the previous Express Entry draw on January 10, which had a CRS cut-off score of 446.

As with the five previous draws, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) employed a tie-break rule. In this case, the time and date of the tie-break was January 17, 2018 at 12:33:00 UTC. This means that all candidates with a CRS score above 444, as well as those candidates with scores of 444 who entered their profile in the Express Entry pool before this time, will receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA).

Both the first and second draws of 2018 already have CRS scores well below the first two draws of 2017, which went on to set a number of Express Entry records.

Sixteen draws over the first half of 2017 eventually led to a record low CRS cut-off score of 413 on May 31.

As part of its three-year immigration levels plan unveiled last November, IRCC has set an admissions target of 74,900 for Express Entry for 2018, an increase of 3,200 over its target for 2017.

If the higher admissions target for 2018 translates into more frequent draws, that could also mean further record-breaking CRS cut-off scores.

The start of 2018 has also seen activity among Express Entry-aligned Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) streams in Manitoba and Ontario. Such PNPs are becoming an increasingly popular fast-track option for Express Entry candidates.

On January 22, Ontario’s Human Capital Priorities Stream issued 340 Notifications of Interest to Express Entry candidates who had submitted their profile between January 1 and January 19. On January 11, Manitoba’s Express Entry Pathway issued 155 Letters of Advice to Apply to Express Entry candidates who have also submitted a profile with the Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program (MPNP).

Express Entry candidates with a provincial nomination receive an additional 600 CRS points, putting them well within reach of an ITA in a subsequent draw.

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Australia announced few changes to skilled occupation lists in 2018

Australia announced few changes to skilled occupation lists in 2018

Australia has announced changes to the skilled occupation lists for the immigration intake program for the year 2018. The changes take effect on Wednesday, 17th January 2018.

Every year hundreds of thousands of foreign workers choose to live and work in Australia because of the lifestyle and employment opportunities offered.

The Skilled Occupation List (SOL) is a list of skilled occupations that deliver high value skills needed by the Australian economy.

SOL aims to meet medium- to long-term skills needs of high value occupations, rather than immediate short-term shortages.

The suitability of occupations for inclusion on the SOL is assessed from time to time basis.

Department of Home Affairs today announced changes to Australia’s Skilled Occupation Lists.

A summary of the proposed changes can be found on the Department’s website – summary of 17 January 2018 changes to the lists of eligible skilled occupations. 

Australia announced few changes to skilled occupation lists in 2018

Australia announced few changes to skilled occupation lists in 2018

Occupations added to the lists

The three occupations below, which were previously unavailable on either list, will be added to the STSOL. Details of any caveats applicable to these three occupations are also provided below:

Australia announced few changes to skilled occupation lists in 2018

Australia announced few changes to skilled occupation lists in 2018

Occupations moved between the lists 

Occupations moved between the lists

Occupations moved between the lists

The two occupations below will be moved from the STSOL to the MTLSSL. Details of any caveats applicable to these occupations are also provided below.

According to Home Affair website*, these changes have been made to reflect the skills needs of the Australian labour market.

The changes also aim to support Australian businesses to address skills shortages that they are unable to fill locally.

Migration expert, Jujhar Singh Bajwa told SBS Punjabi that the changes in the SOL primarily impact applications in general skilled migration independent category.

“The occupations of Hair or Beauty Salon Manager and Building Associate will be removed from the lists for all skilled visa programs on 17 January 2018.”

“The biggest gain would for the applicants applying under the tags of Property Manager, Psychotherapist and as Real Estate Representatives.

“These three occupations that were previously unavailable on either list will be added to the visa program.

“Horse Breeder and Management Consultant trades have been moved between the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) and the Short-term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL) for particular visa programs.

The six-monthly review cycle of the occupation lists was established by the Australian Government in April 2017 to ensure that the occupations lists are responsive to changes in the Australian labour market, and align with the Australian Government’s policy that Australian workers have priority.

The changes will apply to applications made on or after 17 January 2018 and will not affect existing nominations or applications made prior to this date.

In the case of points-tested visas, the changes will apply to invitations issued on or after 17 January 2018.

Caveats on occupations

The visa programs of Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457) and Employer Nominated Scheme visa (subclass 186) – Direct Entry Stream can no longer be used for the occupations listed here where the nominee’s position does not meet the ‘caveat’ requirements as specified in the relevant legislative instrument.

A summary of the caveats that apply to particular occupations is provided below. For the specific wording of each caveat, see the legislative instrument for the relevant visa program as outlined on the Department’s website.

A new regional occupations list is currently under development. This additional list will come into effect with the introduction of the new Temporary Skills Shortage (TSS) visa in March 2018 and will help ensure regional employers are well supported.

In March 2018, the subclass 457 program will be closed and replaced by the new, more targeted TSS visa.

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South Australia has temporarily closed state nomination applications

South Australia has temporarily closed state nomination applications

South Australia has temporarily closed state nomination applications

South Australia has temporarily closed state nomination applications

Temporary closure of 188/132 state nomination applications

The state nomination applications are temporarily closed as the state has exceeded the number of places made available by the Department of Home Affairs.

South Australia has temporarily closed subclass 188/132 state nomination applications.

Subclass 188 is Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa which allows the person to own and manage a business in Australia (the Business Innovation stream), conduct business and investment activity in Australia (the Investor stream, the Significant Investor stream and the Premium Investor stream) or undertake an entrepreneurial activity in Australia (Entrepreneur stream).

Subclass 132 is Business Talent (Permanent) visa which allows the person to establish a new or develop an existing business in Australia. It has two streams: Significant Business History stream: for high-caliber business owners or part-owners who want to do business in Australia and Venture Capital Entrepreneur stream: for people who have sourced venture capital funding from a member of the Australian Venture Capital Association Limited (AVCAL).

On January 31st, the Immigration SA’s official website announced some important changes regarding these Subclass 188/132 visas.

Subclass 188/132 state nomination applications are temporarily closed as the state has exceeded the number of places made available by the Department of Home Affairs. Immigration SA expects to re-open late March/early April 2018 when additional places are released.

Applications that have commenced but not completed or submitted on the Immigration SA website, will no longer be able to be accessed.

Applications that have been submitted will be processed as per the stated processing times listed on the Immigration SA website and in accordance with priority processing arrangements.

Subclass 892/893/888/405 applications are unaffected by the above closure and can continue to be submitted online.

The Immigration SA department has said they will advise when the online applications for subclass 188/132 have been re-opened.

During this time we encourage applicants to continue to research the benefits of living and doing business in South Australia by undertaking an exploratory visit in preparation for their future application.

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