How to immigrate to Canada from India

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Immigration candidates have more than 100 different permanent residence pathways to choose from when immigrating to Canada

India is the number one source country for immigrants coming from overseas to Canada.

There were about 1,374,710 people of Indian origin in Canada in 2016, according to the census. Since then, the number of Indian immigrants has increased substantially over the last few years.

In 2019, Indian citizens accounted for a quarter of the 341,000 immigrants who were welcomed by Canada. In 2015, Indian citizens made up just 14 per cent of Canada’s immigrants.

When examining the distribution of people who applied through the Express Entry system, Indians accounted for almost half of the principal applicants who were invited to apply for permanent residence between 2017 and 2019. By comparison, only 7 per cent of invitations were issued to immigrants from Nigeria and China, the second and third most common source countries of Canadian immigrants.

Though Express Entry is the main pathway to Canadian permanent residence, there are over 100 economic-class immigration programs to choose from. Here is a breakdown of some of the options available to Indian citizens and the world.

Express Entry

Express Entry is the most popular way to immigrate to Canada particularly for skilled workers. To enter the Express Entry pool, you must first be eligible for one of Canada’s economic class immigration programs: Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) or Canadian Experience Class (CEC).

You will also need results for an English or French language test, and you will need to get an Educational Credential Assessment on any degrees, diplomas, or certificates that you obtained outside of Canada.

Once you are in the pool, you will be given a score based on your human capital factors such as your age, work experience, education, language proficiency and other factors. Your score is based on the Comprehensive Ranking System.

Canada regularly holds Express Entry draws inviting the highest-ranked candidates to apply for permanent residence.

Provincial Nominations

In addition to Express Entry, candidates can obtain a provincial nomination for permanent residence. If you are interested in a specific Canadian province or territory, this may be an option.

Provinces nominate individuals usually to fill their provincial labour needs. All provinces and territories, except Quebec and Nunavut, participate in the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP).

Provincial programs can be one of two types: base programs or enhanced programs.

Enhanced programs are where candidates would still need an Express Entry profile to qualify. With base programs, candidates can deal with the provincial government directly.

Once a candidate receives a provincial nomination, they are awarded an additional 600 CRS points and would practically guarantee receipt of an Invitation to Apply (ITA).

100 pathways

In addition to the economic-class immigration programs and the various PNPs, Canada has many more programs including the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot, where small remote communities are able to nominate foreign workers for permanent residence.

In addition, Quebec has its own immigration program that is tailored for French-speaking and bilingual candidates.

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