Report: Ontario remains most popular destination province for Express Entry immigrants to Canada

Express Entry

Canada’s most populated province, Ontario, continues to be the most popular destination for Express Entry immigrants, welcoming nearly 64 percent of total new admissions in 2019.

Ontario is home to Canada’s largest city, Toronto, as well as its capital, Ottawa.

However, the share of Express Entry immigrants settling in Ontario has decreased very slightly since 2018, with an increasing share of candidates looking further west. Manitoba, in particular, witnessed a surge in new Express Entry immigrants — its 2,521 newcomers through Express Entry in 2019 was nearly three times the number in 2018.

Note that Quebec is not listed above. This is because Quebec operates a distinct economic immigration system separate from Express Entry.

Many workers and families who activated their permanent resident status in 2019 were invited in previous years, as it can take some time — roughly up to 18 months — between the date an application is submitted and the date by which an approved applicant must land in Canada. It takes Canada around six months to process an Express Entry application, and approved applicants have 12 months to land. As such, many 2019 arrivals would have been invited in 2018 or 2017.

Will the coronavirus affect Express Entry settlement in Canada?

The data in the table above are from 2019, right before the coronavirus pandemic swept across the world, closing borders and halting most migration between countries.

When a column for 2020 is added next year, the settlement patterns may vary more significantly than usual because, at the time of writing, Canada has not invited any Federal Skilled Worker candidates to apply since early March, preferring instead to invite Canadian Experience Class candidates and provincial nominees, who are far more likely to already be residing in Canada. It will be interesting to see how the change in the issuance of invitations over recent months may ultimately affect where workers and families settle in Canada.

The information in this article is from the year-end 2019 Express Entry report, which was published by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) in June, 2020.

See our other summaries from the 2019 Express Entry Year-End Report, including:

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