Nearly half of all nominees were in Canada’s Express Entry pool and a quarter were high-tech workers
Ontario issued 6,850 nominations for Canadian permanent residence in 2018 with nearly half going to candidates in the federal Express Entry system, a new report by the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program shows.
Known as the OINP, the program allows Ontario to nominate a set number of economic immigration candidates each year for Canadian permanent residence.
The OINP is the largest component of the federal Provincial Nominee Program, which works with participating provinces and territories to spread the economic benefits of immigration more evenly across Canada.
The report published February 22 states that the 6,850 nominations that Ontario was allotted in 2018 will translate into 13,571 new immigrants to the province with the addition of accompanying spouses and dependents.
Express Entry nominations
Nearly 50 per cent of the nominations issued in 2018 went to candidates in the Government of Canada’s Express Entry system, which manages the pool of candidates for three of the country’s main federal economic immigration categories.
The OINP has three immigration streams that are aligned with the Express Entry system — Human Capital Priorities, French-Speaking Skilled Worker and Skilled Trades.
The streams allow the OINP to search the Express Entry pool for eligible candidates who meet their eligibility criteria and invite them to apply for a provincial nomination for permanent residence.
The Human Capital Priorities Stream was the most active of the three, issuing 2,190 nominations in 2018 — the most of any OINP immigration pathway.
Another 648 nominations were issued through the Skilled Trades Stream and 387 were issued through the French-Speaking Skilled Worker Stream.
In order to be considered for any of Ontario’s Express Entry streams, eligible candidates must first submit an Express Entry profile.
‘High number’ of tech nominations
Ontario said around a quarter of nominations went to candidates citing work experience or a job offer in technology-related occupations.
These occupations included software engineers and designers, computer programmers, interactive media developers, IT systems analysts and technology consultants, the OINP report states.
India-born nominees lead the way
Ontario’s 2018 nominees hailed from 147 countries.
Candidates born in India received more nominations than candidates born in any other country. A total of 2,651 of the 6,850 nominations issued by Ontario went to immigration candidates who were born in India, or nearly 39 per cent of total nominations.
Candidates born in China received 1,424 nominations, or nearly 21 per cent of total nominations.
Top 10 Countries of Birth
# of Nominations
Only 36 per cent of nominees had a job offer in Ontario prior to being nominated and only three of the eight non-business streams that issued nominations in 2018 require a job offer.
The OINP’s three Express Entry-aligned streams do not list a job offer among their eligibility requirements.
That said, the Human Capital Priorities Stream has some built-in flexibility that allows it to target Express Entry candidates based on labour market needs in Ontario, which the OINP made use of on three occasions in 2018 to target Express Entry candidates with a job offer in the province.
Other Ontario immigration streams that issued nominations in 2018 and do not require a job offer included the Master’s Graduate and PhD Graduate streams.
These streams are available to graduates who obtained a degree that involved at least one academic year of full-time study from an eligible university in Ontario, among other eligibility criteria.
What’s in store?
Ontario says it has yet to receive its 2019 nomination allocation from the federal government.
This, however, has not prevented the OINP from issuing invitations.
The province’s three Express Entry-aligned streams have been especially active in 2019, issuing a total of a 2,053 invitations to apply for a provincial nomination.
The Human Capital Priorities Stream alone has been responsible for 1,493 invitations, which were issued in one draw held on January 14.