June 7, 2019 – Quebec’s provincial government has announced plans for immigration levels to increase every year for the next three years.
By 2022, the Coalition Avenir Quebec plans to increase annual Quebec immigration to above 50,000.
The proposal was announced by the Department of Immigration, Diversity and Inclusion (MIDI) on Friday June 7, 2019.
Increases will be concentrated in the economic class, according to the plan, which Immigration Minister Simon Jolin-Barrette described as a ‘government proposal’ instead of an official immigration plan.
It comes after the CAQ followed through on a campaign promise to reduce the number of newcomers by 20 per cent for 2019, to around 40,000.
The target of between 49,500 and 52,500 new immigrants for 2022 is effectively the same as the previous Liberal government. In 2016 to 2018, 53,084, 52,388 and 51,118 immigrants were admitted.
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The proposal targets incremental increases each year, with a maximum of 44,500 to be admitted in 2020, 47,500 in 2021 and 52,500 by 2022.
Increases will be concentrated in the economic category, over which Quebec has full control.
Quebec plans to welcome 32,000 and 33,900 economic immigrants by 2022. This equates to an increase of 10,000 on the planned 2019 number.
The CAQ says it wants to increase the proportion of economic immigrants to 65 per cent of the total by 2022. This year it is expected to be 59 per cent.
Immigration System Overhaul
The CAQ said a temporary reduction in numbers was needed for 2019 to allow the immigration system to be overhauled and the integration of newcomers to be improved.
Through Bill 9, Quebec plans to cancel thousands of existing skilled worker immigration applications in order to transition to the new Quebec Expression of Interest system, which will operate similarly to the federal Express Entry system.
Quebec Skilled Worker Backlog
|Number of pending applications||18,000||45,000+|
|How many working/studying in Quebec||3,700||9,250|
|Number of applications concluded monthly 2015||2,000||5,000|
|Number of applications accepted monthly 2015||1000||2,500|
The CAQ is desperate for the bill to become law before the end of the session in less than two weeks. They say Liberal politicians on the committee studying the bill are deliberately slowing its progress.
Quebec Premier François Legault has accused the Liberals of ‘playing games’.
The provincial government tried to stop processing files when it tabled Bill 9 in February, effectively adopting the legislation before it had been voted into law.
However, a February 25 injunction forced MIDI to continue processing applications.
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