Last Updated on February 7, 2020
October 16, 2018 – The number of people leaving Quebec for other provinces has plummeted since 2014, figures show.
Quebec’s strong jobs market and thriving economy means the draw of moving to Ontario, Alberta and elsewhere, has been significantly weakened.
Statistics Canada figures show well that while Quebec’s net inter-provincial migration remains negative, the number leaving for elsewhere is well under half of what it was five years ago.
In the last 12 months, the French-speaking province lost a net of 6,761 people to inter-provincial migration, compared to 16,142 in 2014/2015.
The trend has shown a steady decline in the years in between, mirroring the progress made with Quebec’s unemployment rate and economic outlook.
Experts say the unemployment rate has always been a central factor in why people move.
Quebec’s jobless figure currently stands at 5.3 per cent, according to the latest Labour Force Survey, putting it second behind British Columbia for the lowest provincial unemployment.
Given Quebecers traditionally move to neighbouring Ontario, the unemployment balance between the two is an important factor in inter-provincial migration.
With Ontario’s unemployment currently at 5.9 per cent, the balance is in favour of Quebec, and people are staying put because of that.
Provincial Unemployment Rates in Canada
|Unemployment rate (%)|
|1) British Columbia||4.2|
|7) Nova Scotia||7.8|
|8) New Brunswick||7.9|
|9) Prince Edward Island||8.7|
|10) Newfoundland & Labrador||13.6|
Source: Statistics Canada
Figures show nearly 85 per cent of new arrivals – be it from other provinces or through immigration from abroad – are still in Quebec fives years later.
People, particularly those aged 25 to 54, no longer have reason to up and move, with the employment rate in Quebec for the core working age comparable to Ontario (77.8 per cent versus 78.4 per cent).
Other factors that affect inter-provincial migration include tax rates, access to daycare, access to social programs and cost of housing.
Quebec performs favourably on many of these compared to Ontario.
Experts point out that a house selling for $350,000 in the French-speaking province can go for more than $1 million in parts of Ontario.
Projections suggest Quebec’s inter-provincial migration deficit will continue to decline, although experts say this will be insufficient to fill the growing number of vacancies in the job market.
Vacancies have been rising for two years in Quebec, with the latest figures showing 109,600 jobs available in the province.
To tackle this, Quebec recently launched an Expression of Interest immigration system called ‘Arrima’.
Under the new system, immigration candidates will be considered based on how well they meet Quebec’s economic needs.
Previously, applications were considered on a first-come, first-served basis.
How Does Quebec Expression of Interest Work?
- Candidates submit an online expression of interest profile to the MIDI.
- Profiles enter into an Expression of Interest pool, where they are ranked against each other and are valid for 12-months.
- Profiles will be classified in two categories: one for candidates who are living in Quebec or have a job offer and meet specific criteria, and the another for candidates living outside Quebec and meet specific criteria.
- The highest-ranking candidates will receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for a Quebec Certificate of Selection under the Quebec Skilled Worker Program.
- Quebec will conduct periodic draws, inviting candidates to apply for a Quebec certificate of selection (CSQ).
- Candidates receiving an invitation have 90 days to submit a full application.
- Approved candidates who receive a nomination certificate (CSQ) may then apply for Canadian permanent residence.
Interested employers: Kindly contact us here to receive further information.
Interested candidates: Find out whether you qualify to Canada by completing our free on-line evaluation. We will provide you with our evaluation within 1-2 business days.
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