Quebec is located in eastern Canada. It is steeped in rich European culture and history with vibrant cities such as Montreal and Quebec City - the capital city most people tend to call home when they immigrate to Quebec. Here’s a breakdown of everything you should know about Quebec Immigration Programs.
Quick Quebec Facts
Quebec is the only Canadian province that is mainly Francophone. The province adopted the Charter of the French Language, which instated the predominant use of French at a provincial government level, as well as within the general Quebecois society.
The province has a population of over 8 million people, with an unemployment rate of 4,0%.
You'll find a stable economy with many booming sectors in the areas of aerospace, information and communications technologies, biotechnology, and pharmaceuticals.
The province has an excellent education system. In fact, most of Canada's french-language primary and secondary schools, colleges and universities can be found in Quebec.
Quebec is also known to have a multitude of creative platforms, broadcasting networks and government institutions that push arts and culture initiatives in French.
Immigrate to Quebec
Quebec has a special immigration deal with the Government of Canada. It has its own rules for selecting newcomers it deems eligible to adapt to the Quebecois way of life.
According to the province’s 2023 immigration plan, it hopes to accept around 33,900 immigrants via the Economic Immigration program. The economic group makes up the largest chunk of newcomers and is set to welcome as many as 4,300 business immigrants. Included in this amount are investors, entrepreneurs, and self-employed individuals, up to 29,500 skilled employees; and up to 100 candidates from additional economic categories.
Quebec Skilled Worker Program (QSWP)
If you wish to gain Canadian permanent residency and work in Quebec, the Quebec Skilled Worker Program is a great pathway to immigrate to the province. You will have to meet certain selection criteria such as your education, work experience, age, language skills in French and English, and the ability to financially support yourself and your dependents.
If you want to immigrate to Canada as a Quebec-selected skilled worker, you'll have to apply in two stages:
- You first apply to the Government of Quebec for your Quebec Selection Certificate (Certificat de sélection du Québec [CSQ]). This certificate indicates that the province accepts you as an immigrant. The province then assesses you according to its rule book.
- If you successfully get a CSQ, you must apply to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada for permanent residency.
Note that you must take a medical exam and get a police certificate to apply for the Quebec Skilled Worker Program. Applications for this program must be done online.
Quebec Experience Class (PEQ)
This program allows international students or skilled temporary workers with an intermediate skill level in French to apply for permanent residence in Quebec, Canada. If you wish to immigrate to Quebec under the Quebec Experience Class (PEQ) you can do so under one of the following categories:
- Quebec Graduate - if you have a qualification from an eligible Quebec institution and have at least 12 to 18 months (depending on your study program) work experience in Quebec; or
- Skilled Temporary Worker - if you currently have a skilled job in the province for at least 24 months of the last 36 months.
You will be required to apply for this program on the Arrima platform.
Quebec Business Immigration
If you are interested in applying for permanent residence in Quebec and would like to invest in, start a new or buy an existing business in the province you can choose from one of the following programs:
- Entrepreneur Program
- Investor Program
- Self-employed Program
The application intake is limited for each category and has its own application intake period and eligibility criteria. Applications are assessed on factors such as age, education, language skills, financial stability, as well as ties to the province, such as previous visits to Quebec or family members already living there.
There are two streams under this program. Stream 1 is for foreign entrepreneurs who want to start and run a business in Quebec, and Stream 2 is for foreign entrepreneurs who wish to purchase and run a business in Quebec. You'll need:
- A minimum start-up deposit of between $200,000 and $300,000 as well as a minimum of $900,000 net worth
- Ownership and control a portion of at least 25% equity in the business, if you start a business
- To own and control a minimum 51% equity in the enterprise. If you choose to buy a business
- Be actively involved in the management of the business
- Score enough points on the selection grid
- Get an attestation of learning about democratic values and Québec values
The investor program is for foreign investors who want to invest in a business in Quebec. You will need to:
- Enter into an investment agreement with a financial intermediary. This must be either an investment broker or a trust company that has an agreement with the Ministère de l'Immigration, de la Francisation et de l'Intégration and IQ Immigrants Investisseurs Inc.
- Agree to a five-year term investment of at least $1,200,000
- Have at least $2,000,000 in net assets
- Have at least two years of business management experience in the past 5 years
- Earn enough points in the selection grid
- Get an attestation of learning about democratic values and Québec values
Self Employed Worker Program
This program is for professional or business people who wish to migrate to Quebec in a self-employed position. To qualify, you will need:
- A net worth of at least CDN$100,000
- A deposit of at least $25,000 to $50,000 in start-up capital
- At least two years of experience in a relevant self-employed position
- To score sufficient points in the selection grid
- Permission to legally work as a self-employed professional in a regulated profession
Get Ready to Live and Work in Quebec
Now that you know your options for immigrating to Quebec, it's time to check your eligibility and get your journey to Quebecois living underway. And if you're feeling somewhat overwhelmed with all the processes, our team of accredited Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants (RCIC) are at hand to guide you from the beginning to the end. Here's to living and working in Quebec.
Is Quebec a Participant of Canada's Provincial Nominee Program?
No. The province has its own programs for people who wish to work there.
What is Arrima?
Arrima is Quebec's online immigration service. You will be able to submit applications on it for all Quebec's immigration programs.
What is the Difference Between Selection by Québec and Admission by Canada?
In the province of Québec, immigration falls within the jurisdiction of both the Government of Québec and Canada.
The Government of Québec is responsible for selecting people who want to immigrate there. The province has its own criteria. When it selects you, you and your family will get a Certificat de sélection du Québec (CSQ – Québec Selection Certificate).
The Government of Canada, on the other hand, has the responsibility of granting workers who want to settle in the province admission. is responsible for the admission of workers wishing to settle on its territory. To be admitted to Québec, you and your family must:
- Be selected by the Government of Québec
- Apply for permanent residency with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)
- Pass a medical examination and security checks.
To be able to successfully immigrate to Québec, you and your loved ones will have to meet the requirements of both governments.