François Legault, who is the Quebec Premier, has made public his government’s plans to make Quebec a more popular immigrant destination. The objective is to give a boost to economic immigration and invite more skilled workers and entrepreneurs into the province so that it can progress at a faster rate. Legault, in a recent interview that was published in Le Devoir, which is a French newspaper, emphasized that the government has great plans to increase immigration in Quebec. The ultimate goal is to grant immigration status to 49,500- 52,500 immigrants by the end of 2022. 65% of them are going to be selected with the help of Quebec’s economic-class immigration programs. This year, the number stood at just 59%, so Quebec is trying to make a large jump.
The Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) government introduced by Legault has been operating since October 2018. There was a temporary reduction in Quebec’s immigration target for the year 2019 with the numbers dropping to 40,000. This marked a fall of roughly 20% over the year of 2018. According to the CAQ, this step was important so that the newcomers into the province could become a part of the Quebec society seamlessly. The target that has been set for the 2022 target will help Quebec’s immigration level to attain the figures it had four years ago.
Legault, in his interview with Le Devoir, mentioned that Quebec’s doors are now open to all potential immigration candidates who are armed with the skills that are needed by Quebec companies. He was specially asked if he was talking about people, such as engineers.
Quebec’s acute shortage of labor is one of the reasons why the government is trying to increase the immigration rate. The situation will become worse in the next few years as more people age up and retire from the workforce. According to Legault, attending to the labor shortage has been his highest priority in his first few months as the head of the government.