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What’s the best way to immigrate to Canada from South Africa? When you’re in a hurry, the best way to get there is the quickest way obviously. For South Africans, the Canada Express Entry is an attractive immigration option that can lead to Canadian permanent residence. It was introduced in 2015 at a federal government level as a means to replace the previous ‘first come, first served’ approach to Canadian immigration. So, if you’re a South African thinking about relocating to the land of maple syrup and mounted police, here’s what you need to know about Canada’s Express Entry immigration.

What is Express Entry and how does it work if you’re looking to immigrate to Canada?

Technically speaking, the Express Entry into Canada is not an immigration program as much as it is an online system created to oversee Canada’s immigration application processes and intake. The Express Entry system manages the pool of candidates for Canada’s three Federal High Skilled economic immigration programs, ranking eligible candidates based on a score calculated in terms of the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), which awards points based on considerations like age, education, skilled work experience and language proficiency in English or French. A limited number of the highest-ranking candidates receive an invitation to apply for permanent Canadian residency through regular draws from this Express Entry pool of candidates that take place every two weeks.

If you meet the eligibility requirements, you will create an online profile that serves as an Expression of Interest (EOI) in line with one of the three federal Canadian immigration programs or a participating provincial immigration program. If you receive an invitation to apply for permanent residence, you will need to hustle to submit this application and pay the processing fee within 60 days. Canada’s federal government aims to process all complete permanent residence applications in under six months.

Which Canadian immigration programs are included for Express Entry into Canada?

Federal Skilled Worker Program:

  • This program uses its own points system designed to establish if the applicant and his/her dependents will successfully settle in Canada.
  • Applicants should ideally hold skills and experience in line with high-demand occupations.
  • Selection rules favour applicants with government-approved job offers. Get more details on whether you qualify to use the Federal Skilled Worker program as your ticket to immigrate to Canada here.

Federal Skilled Trades Program:

  • Applications for permanent residence under this program are quota based and limited to 3000 applications per year with sub-limits in most of the 43 targeted, sought after occupations. Learn more about the requirements of the Federal Skilled Trades Program to get into Canada, here.

Canada Experience Class:

  • This immigration program recognises the contributions made to Canada from immigration candidates who have already spent significant amounts of time pursuing their studies and working careers in Canada, by making it possible to apply for permanent residence.
  • Permanent residence is awarded in recognition of contributions made to the Canadian economy and society as a whole. Learn more about the Canadian Experience Class requirements, here.

Select streams under Provincial Nominee Programs:

  • These are programs that allow provincial and territorial governments to select and nominate their own candidates from the Express Entry Pool for permanent residence.
  • Receiving a nomination adds 600 points to your total under the comprehensive ranking system (CRS), which is usually enough to ensure you receive an invitation to apply for permanent residence (ITA). Read about the requirements for Provincial and Territorial Nominee Programs, here.

Why is the Express Entry such a big deal for immigration into Canada?

  • It’s a smart way for Canada to ensure that they have an influx of skills and trades to meet their economic and social needs.
  • It’s a more accurate method of aligning Canada’s immigration intake with actual labour market requirements.
  • It’s a dynamic process that lets you improve your scores while you’re in the pool, which allows you to work up to earning an Invitation to Apply.
  • This method offers a transparent, realistic view of immigration prospects and significantly cuts processing time by prioritising applications more likely to be successful.

FinGlobal: Financial services that match your global ambitions

Deciding whether to immigrate to Canada from South Africa is a big decision, followed by hard work to make it happen. We can help you lessen the administrative headache and make sense of your financial journey as you move your life and your money to make a fresh start abroad. 

We offer a full suite of financial services for South African expats, including retirement annuity encashment, financial emigration, tax clearance, foreign exchange and so much more.

To see what makes us the smart choice in partner for cross-border financial services, contact us for your free no-obligation assessment.