In a recent announcement on May 31st, Immigration Minister Sean Fraser unveiled the launch of category-based selection draws and priority for Transport Occupations in Express Entry candidates by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). The objective is to prioritize candidates who possess strong French language proficiency or work experience in specific fields that align with the current labour market demands in Canada.

The selected sectors for preference include:

  1. Healthcare
  2. Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) professions
  3. Trades, such as carpenters, plumbers, and contractors
  4. Transport
  5. Agriculture and agri-food

IRCC’s decision to focus on these occupations was informed by information regarding labor market shortages in Canada. To ensure a comprehensive approach, IRCC engaged with their partners, including provinces, territories, and stakeholders across the country, to gather valuable input.

In line with this initiative, IRCC conducted its inaugural category-based Express Entry draw on June 28th, inviting 500 healthcare workers to apply for permanent residency. Another draw is scheduled for July 5th, where an additional 1,500 healthcare workers are expected to receive invitations.

Simultaneously, IRCC anticipates conducting another category-based draw on July 5th, targeting eligible candidates in STEM professions, further addressing the demand for skilled professionals in these fields.

This approach not only supports the Canadian labor market but also presents opportunities for Express Entry candidates to receive invitations based on their expertise and language abilities. For more detailed information and guidance on the application process, it is recommended to consult with immigration professionals or visit the official IRCC website.

Reasons Behind Choosing Transport Occupations as a Category

The decision to include transport occupations as a category in IRCC’s category-based selection draws was driven by several factors. Employment and Social Development Canada reported a doubling of occupations facing shortages between 2019 and 2021, highlighting the growing demand in various sectors.

Statistics Canada’s data from 2022 Q4 on job vacancies revealed significant numbers in the trades category, which encompasses wholesale trades and retail trades. Wholesale trades had 30,930 job vacancies, while retail trades had 108,795 job vacancies. This data underlines the need to address shortages and fill vacancies in the trades sector.

IRCC conducted a public consultation to enhance Express Entry through category-based selection. Stakeholders and the public provided feedback and suggestions during this engagement process. The majority of participating stakeholders expressed support for category-based selection to address labor market shortages in specific occupations or sectors.

In response to the consultation, around 16% of respondents, particularly those representing the trades sector, indicated that trades, transport, and equipment operations were the areas experiencing the greatest needs.

Eligibility Requirements for the Transport Occupations Category

To be eligible for the transport occupations category, candidates must meet the following criteria:

  1. Meet the eligibility requirements of one of the Express Entry programs: Federal Skilled Worker Program, Canadian Experience Class, or Federal Skilled Trades Program.
  2. Have accumulated at least 6 months of continuous work experience in one of the listed transport occupations within the past 3 years.
  3. Fulfill all other requirements outlined in the instructions for the category-based draw.

These eligibility requirements aim to ensure that candidates possess the necessary qualifications and experience to contribute to the transport sector in Canada.

It is important for prospective applicants to review the specific instructions and guidelines provided by IRCC to ensure they meet all the criteria for the transport occupations category within the Express Entry system. Consulting with immigration professionals or referring to the official IRCC website can provide further assistance and guidance throughout the application process.

The transportation occupation category comprises 10 specific occupations. These occupations are:

  1. Aircraft assemblers and aircraft assembly inspectors
  2. Transport truck drivers
  3. Railway traffic controllers and marine traffic regulators
  4. Engineer officers, water transport
  5. Deck officers, water transport
  6. Air traffic controllers and related occupations
  7. Air pilots, flight engineers, and flying instructors
  8. Aircraft mechanics and aircraft inspectors
  9. Railway carmen/women
  10. Managers in transportation

These occupations cover a range of roles and responsibilities within the transportation industry, including aviation, trucking, rail transportation, and maritime operations. Individuals with experience and qualifications in these fields can explore opportunities for immigration to Canada through the Express Entry system.

Selection Process for Express Entry Category-Based Rounds of Invitation

Under the category-based selection draws, Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will invite eligible candidates to apply for permanent residence in Canada.

The selection of candidates for these rounds of invitations will be based on the following criteria:

  1. Work Experience: Candidates must have relevant work experience in a specific TEER (Transportation, Equipment Operation, and Related Maintenance and Repair) category of the National Occupational Classification (NOC). This ensures that candidates have the necessary skills and expertise in transportation-related occupations.
  2. Language Ability: Candidates need to demonstrate proficiency in either English or French, the two official languages of Canada. Strong language skills are essential for effective communication and integration into the Canadian workforce and society.
  3. Education: Candidates should meet the educational requirements specified for the respective transportation occupation category. This ensures that applicants have the necessary qualifications and educational background to excel in their chosen field.

By considering these factors, IRCC aims to identify candidates with the right skills, language abilities, and educational background to contribute to the transportation sector in Canada.

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