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Were you expecting an Express Entry draw this week? Same here, but it seems that Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) may have other plans.

Key Takeaways

  • IRCC typically completes draws every two weeks, most often on Tuesday for a general draw and Wednesday for a category-based draw. 
  • Over a month has passed since the last draw on April 24th. IRCC has not published information about what has caused this hiatus. 
  • Given the lack of draws in May and the ambitious immigration target for 2024, when draws so resume, we will either see larger numbers of invitations issued per draw or more draws.
  • When the next Express Entry draw finally comes, applicants must show proof of funds as per the new thresholds if they submit their application after May 27th, 2024.


IRCC Internal Policy For Draws in 2024

In an internal IRCC memo that was obtained by Carry Immigration through an Access to Information request, IRCC notes the importance of a regular draw schedule: 

“Regularity in the Express Entry round schedule provides a greater degree of predictability for clients and PTs as to when ITA rounds (including category-specific draws) will occur, while supporting public confidence in the Express Entry system.”  – Internal IRCC Memo

The internal memo also provided insight into what goes into a draw operationally for IRCC. It specifically mentions how implementing a regular cadence helps to support the efficient use of resources internally. It notes that “If the pre-determined schedule is not followed, the round plan needs to be adjusted more frequently, as the pool composition changes with each round that is held, particularly since clients can qualify for multiple round types.”

So, in other words, IRCC has indicated that it wants to maintain a consistent schedule for draws in 2024. 

But, IRCC isn’t required to publish or stick to a draw schedule, nor is IRCC required to hold draws every two weeks. It typically keeps this schedule because it helps to support confidence in the Express Entry system. 

What You Should Be Doing While Waiting for the Next Draw

While we are all waiting with great anticipation for the next draw, those with an active Express Entry profile should be updating their proof of funds. If your profile is not updated to reflect more than the new threshold, your profile will be removed from the pool. You have until May 27th, 2024 to do this. You can view the updated proof of funds threshold on our dedicated Moving2Canada page.

Reasons There Was No Express Entry Draw This Week

As outlined above, IRCC hasn’t published any information about why it did not hold a draw this week. However, there are some reasons that occasionally impact draws: 

New Proof of Funds Requirement

As of May 27th, 2024, applicants who receive an ITA and submit an application for permanent residence must demonstrate sufficient proof of funds as per the new thresholds. Normally any increase in the funds threshold is minimal. In 2023, the threshold increased 3.36%, which for a single applicant, was a difference of $447. In 2024, the threshold has increased by 6.78%, the difference of $933 for a single applicant.  Given the substantial increase, it could be that IRCC is waiting for the new thresholds to pass to issue more ITA’s. Thus forcing all applicants to show higher proof of funds on submission of their permanent residence application.

Reported Technical Issues

Technical issues are often the culprit when it comes to a delay in draws. We are not aware of any new technical issues that could be affecting draws, however, it could be an internal issue that IRCC hasn’t published information about. 

IRCC’s Processing Capacity

In order to process immigration applications, IRCC needs staff. Since sending out Express Entry invitations to apply (ITAs) opens a flood gate of applications, IRCC may adjust the frequency of draws in an effort to not overload themselves, and process applications within the standard amount of time. For Express Entry, that’s 80 percent of applications in six months.

According to a March 2023 report, IRCC has more than enough staff to process Express Entry applications this year and into the next five years. So, if processing capacity is the culprit in this case, it’s likely a short-term shift. 

Changing Immigration Policies

While there have been shifts in immigration sentiment recently, largely driven by changing economic conditions and the housing crisis, we haven’t seen any indication that Canada intends to reduce the number of people it invites to become permanent residents in 2024. 

In the latest Immigration Levels Plan, the Canadian government maintained its ambitious immigration targets, aiming to admit 485,000 new permanent residents in 2024 and 500,000 in 2025 and 2026.

Express Entry targets increased from the previous levels plan. As it stands, Canada is now aiming to admit 110,770 principal applicants through Express Entry in 2024, then hold at 117,500 in 2025 and 2026.

With that said, the category-based invitation allocation has really changed Express Entry draws, and it’s possible that this week’s skipped draw is related to the category-based allocation and the associated calculations.

If you want to receive up-to-date information about recent Express Entry draws, create your free Moving2Canada account and subscribe to our newsletter. We regularly email updates about Express Entry draws, and share key information for newcomers to Canada.

About the author

Rebecca Major profile picture
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Rebecca Major

Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant
Rebecca Major is a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (R511564) with nearly 15 years of licenced Canadian Immigration experience, gained after graduating with a Bachelor of Laws in the UK. She specializes in Canadian immigration at Moving2Canada.
Read more about Rebecca Major
Citation "Why Was There No Express Entry Draw This week?." Moving2Canada. . Copy for Citation


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