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Quebec Should Raise Immigration to 60,000, Suggests Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal

By cvf, 08/23/2023

The Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal believes – as it has since 2016 – that Quebec should raise its immigration threshold to a minimum of 60,000 by 2027, with the possibility that those numbers will only grow over the years.  

The Montreal Gazette article credited with this story further emphasized that board president Michel Leblanc believes the number in question to be not an aspirational goal, but rather a minimum that the province should only look to expand upon in the future. 

Doing so, according to him, could make a significant impact on easing Quebec’s health, education, and tech labor shortage challenges that are not unlike the rest of Canada.

“This need, which is quite predictable, can be explained by the demographic tightening of Quebec’s population, which is occurring at a time when our economy is experiencing strong structural momentum,” he said.

“Our society as a whole has to contend with a sustained increase in the number of vacancies in all areas, from health care to education to high-tech sectors.”

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The current official immigration threshold – which is set at 50,000 a year – was deemed by Premier Francois Legault during his 2022 election campaign as the maximum Quebec could afford without incurring “suicidal” costs to the survival of French. 

This is despite Ottawa’s 2023-2025 Immigration Levels Plan allowing Quebec to take in 106,950 immigrants next year – a number it is avoiding by a large margin. 

In fact, Quebec immigration minister Christine Fréchette told Ottawa in November 2022 that “it is up to Quebec to set its own targets for permanent immigration.”

She further added that “the upper limit for Quebec is now 50,000 (new permanent residents) due to our capacity to welcome, provide French-language services and integrate them.”

Legault – who has been a long-standing supporter of preserving French in Quebec – took a step in May 2023 towards making all economic immigration francophone by 2026. He unveiled a series of proposed changes to the province’s immigration system that would turn it toward that aim. 

Leblanc countered this approach by promoting a global approach to immigration, writes the Montreal Gazette piece from August 22. 

Not only did he advocate for supporting people who fit the province’s needs in cities and regions, but he also suggested that the boost in immigrants should be complemented by a government strategy to offset the housing crisis. 

Boosting the province’s immigration targets to 60,000 was one among six recommendations made by the board, with some of the rest being to:

  • define Quebec’s integration capacity
  • reduce wait times for permanent residency applications
  • continuously admit people selected through the Quebec Experience Program (PEQ)
  • increase skilled immigration in construction restore the housing supply
  • work with the francization support ecosystem and the business community to optimize francization services for newcomers. 

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Quebec Liberals and business groups also want immigration to the province raised to 70,000 annually, with provincial Liberal leader Dominique Anglade saying that “this year, Quebec will on the whole welcome that many.”

“This is the policy of François Legault, 70,000 people. If we have the capacity to welcome 70,000 immigrants, I think that we should base ourselves on that figure and we are discussing that in all the regions of Quebec.”

CityNews furthered on this report by highlighting how the annual target number of immigrants to Quebec jumped to close to 69,000 in 2022, which was a peak fuelled by catch-up following a drop in admissions during COVID-19. 

Leblanc used this statistic to prove his point that such numbers of immigrants are not only achievable in theory, but should also be welcomed and integrated in practice.

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The post Quebec Should Raise Immigration to 60,000, Suggests Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal appeared first on Canada Immigration and Visa Information. Canadian Immigration Services and Free Online Evaluation..



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