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Ontario reveals plans to attract IT foreign workers

Ontario will target IT foreign workers in Express Entry draws

The Government of Ontario has revealed its plans to target IT foreign workers for Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program’s (OINP) nomination into the federal Express Entry Program pool. It will hold targeted draws for Express Entry candidates with work experience in six tech-related occupations through its existing Human Capital Priorities Stream.

Ontario is the most popular destination for new permanent residents of Canada, including those admitted through the Express Entry system. In 2018, 65% of new immigrants admitted through Express Entry had Ontario as their destination province.

The  Express Entry Program allows Canada to actively recruit assess and select skilled immigrants under the following federal economic immigration programs: the Federal Skilled Worker Class; the Federal Skilled Trades Class; and the Canadian Experience Class.

Eligible candidates for these programs are entered into the Express Entry pool where they are ranked based on scores awarded under the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). A candidate’s CRS score is based on factors that include age, education, skilled work experience and proficiency in English or French.

Express Entry candidates with a provincial nomination receive an additional 600 points toward their CRS score, effectively guaranteeing an invitation to apply for Canadian permanent residence, or ITA.

To be considered for an invitation through an OINP tech draw, candidates must first create an Express Entry profile.

July 12, 2019 OINP’s Express Entry Human Capital Priorities stream

Issuance of Notifications of Interest by Targeted Occupations

On July 12, 2019, the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINPissued targeted Notifications of Interest (NOIs) to candidates who qualify for Ontario’s Express Entry Human Capital Priorities (HCP) Stream. The OINP targeted candidates with work experience in the following NOC codes:

  • 2173   Software engineers and designers
  • 2174   Computer programmer and interactive media developers
  • 2147   Computer engineers
  • 2175   Web designers and developers
  • 2172   Database analysts and data administrators
  • 0213   Computer and information systems managers

To be eligible for nomination, applicants must demonstrate work experience in one of the 6 eligible NOC codes.  Your application may be refused if you do not demonstrate work experience in one of the eligible NOC codes.

OINP IT Foreign Workers Draws Overview

Tech draws are a new Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) opportunity that falls under the Human Capital Priorities Stream. The purpose is to identify people with technological skills in the Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCCExpress Entry pool.

Through this dedicated approach, OINP is helping to make it easier for businesses in the technology sector to recruit top talent from around the world.

Tech draws

The OINP will be searching the Express Entry pool to find candidates who may:

If OINP identifies you in the pool, you will receive a Notification of Interest (NOI) in your IRCC online account. Receiving an NOI does not necessarily mean that you qualify for one of our streams. You are responsible for reviewing program guides to confirm your eligibility.

If you receive an NOI

You may submit an online application to the OINP if you qualify under one of Ontario’s Express Entry streams. You must submit your application within 45 calendar days of receiving your NOI.

Your application will be processed and a decision to grant or refuse your application will be made in accordance with the Ontario Immigration Act, 2015 and its regulations.

See how many NOIs OINP has issued to date.

Support for businesses

If you are a tech employer interested in finding out more about using immigration to fill your labour market needs, the OINP’s Business Immigration Services team can help. The team takes an active role in helping employers find talent solutions with immigration, including:

  • support in understanding federal and provincial immigration pathways
  • info-sessions, in-person or teleconference meetings
  • dedicated staff to help employers fill labour shortages, hire foreign talent, retain international students and get skilled workers faster

If you’re interested in using immigration to fill a labour shortage, contact OINP Business Immigration Services team at

Employers can also get up-to-date information about application processing times and nominations issued to date. Estimated processing time as of June 13, 2019 for the Human Capital Priorities stream is 30 – 60 days.

How OINP chooses the eligible occupations

To ensure that this initiative meets the needs of Ontario employers, OINP engaged with stakeholders across the province through a survey and face-to-face consultations. This helped OINP choose priority occupations for the targeted technology occupations draws.

In addition to these tech draws, OINP also meets employer priorities through targeted priority occupation draws for non-tech priority occupations.

Employers gave their feedback on their current labour needs and hiring practices, including their need for specific information and communication technology skills and occupations.

Contact OINP

To ask a question or provide feedback on this tech initiative, email OINP any time at or call OINP from Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at: