Express Entry – Top 10 source countries of immigrants to Canada

Express Entry

Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) uses a system called Express Entry to manage the hundreds of thousands of applications made from around the world.

When it was first launched in 2015, the Express Entry system revolutionized the way the Government of Canada processed immigration applications.

Prior to implementing the system, applications took several years to process.

With Express Entry, applicants can receive a decision in as little as six months.

Applicants must create an online profile. Applicants receive scores based on the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), which uses criteria including age, education, language proficiency and work experience.

According to IRCC’s Express Entry Year-End Report for 2019, more than 85,300 applicants received ITAs for permanent residency.


  1. India
  2. Nigeria
  3. China
  4. Pakistan
  5. United Kingdom
  6. Brazil
  7. United States
  8. Iran
  9. France
  10. South Korea

India received the majority of ITAs. Applicants from India received higher CRS scored due to their English language proficiency, high levels of education and work experience that are relevant to the Canadian labour market.


The year end report indicated that successful applicants had the following jobs:

  1. Software engineers and designers
  2. Information systems analysts and consultants
  3. Computer programmers and interactive media developers
  4. Financial auditors and accountants
  5. Administrative assistants

The US Government recently imposed an immigration ban, with many IT workers originally headed for the US now considering applying for Canada instead.

According to the report, 12% of ITAs issued were to applicants who lived in the US.

The number 2 source country was Nigeria, where applicants scored high because of their English language proficiency, high levels of education and work experience in the fields of IT, STEM and the oil and gas industries.

The report also indicated that 48% fo applicants had lived in Canada under different programs like the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP).

International students, like foreign workers, receive additional CRS points for having Canadian experience, which improves their Express Entry rankings.

There are a number of other programs that also take Canadian experience into consideration including the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) and the various Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs).

Despite the bonus that foreign workers and international students receive from having Canadian experience, most of the ITAs issued are to applicants from outside Canada.

More than 45% of ITAs issued were under the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP).

IRCC has suspending issuing ITAs to applicants outside Canada because of the ongoing pandemic.


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