The population of Quebec, the capital city, is around 67,000 and it is also home to Canada’s second largest city, and the second largest French-speaking city in the world.
Each year, Quebec receives an average of 45,000 immigrants from different corners of the world who contribute to its economic, social and cultural development. The Quebec society is democratic which originated due to its diversity. The province provides programs to help immigrants integrate and participate in Quebec society.
Freedom of speech and the right to equality of individuals are at the root of the Quebec political system. The majority of French-speaking together with Anglophones and aboriginals live together and exchange their culture. So, everyone in Quebec is free to choose his lifestyle, opinions, and religions, while respecting the rights of others.
Quebec showcases good economic performance. The economic success is attributed to the industry sector diversification, the entrepreneurial spirit of its business people, research and development investment, and exports.
Quebec has a unique immigration stream outside the federal Express Entry system. As mentioned before, the economic immigration programs include skilled workers, investors, entrepreneurs, and self-employed workers.
Quebec is a province located in eastern Canada, the first by area and the second by population after Ontario. Mostly French-speaking (French is the only official language), Quebec is east of Ontario; west of Newfoundland and Labrador, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island; south of the territory of Nunavut and, finally, is bordered by the states of New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine. The administrative center of Quebec is Quebec City with 735 thousand inhabitants, and the largest city - Montreal, which is Canada's second largest city.
Quebec is a uniquely North American tourist destination. This is one of the few historical areas of North America, where French-speaking culture is fully preserved. European roots are evident in its history, culture, way of life, and this has made Quebec a favorite destination for many people at the national and international level.
Quebec enjoys abundant resources and energy, as well as strong agriculture, manufacturing and service sectors. Sectors, such as forestry and mining are present throughout the province. Its hydroelectric plants are in its east and its far north. Montreal is an economic center of the province.
The manufacturing sector produces products such as air traffic, control equipment, software, subway trains, helicopters, compact disks, air purifiers, and toys. There are a few companies in space and aeronautics, telecommunications, energy and transportation in Montreal. Quebec is also an important exporter of its local production, including electricity, engineering know-how, electronic products, and telecommunication equipment.
Forestry is one of Quebec’s key economic resources. Exploited forests cover about 50 percent of the province, and most of them are government owned.
The province produces more than 30 percent of the Canadian electricity capacity; more than 99 percent of the facilities are hydroelectric. A large portion of this electricity Quebec exports to Ontario, New Brunswick, and the northeastern United States. Quebec’s energy production will increase by 1,550 MW when the Romaine complex in the Côte-Nord region becomes active by 2020.
The main industries in Quebec are manufacturing, generation of electric power, mining, pulp, and paper. 25 percent of the Canadian manufacturing sector belongs to Quebec. Five groups of industries account for 65 percent of the factories and over 50 percent of the manufacturing jobs: clothing and textiles, food and beverages, paper and related products, metal products and wood products.
The province is famous for its beautiful landmarks, sightseeing places, so tourism is also an important part of the Quebec economy.
Quebec City and the surrounding region are seeing a robust economy, a very low unemployment rate, and an outstanding work environment. Almost 70,000 positions will have to be filled in the region over the next five years, according to recent projections by Employment Quebec
The catering and customer service professions (for example, salesman, cashier, cook, waiter, etc.), the jobs in the administrative field, the health professions (like a nurse and assistant nurse) and jobs with children, disabled people and seniors are the fields where there are the most available posts.
French-speaking and highly qualified candidates who want to come and live in Quebec will have a better chance to find a job in the province. In fact, some companies cannot always find the skilled workers they need. Particularly, in professions like machine operators or in the IT field like network administrator or systems analyst.
Among the most important labor fields, are aerospace, food processing industry, information and communication technologies, microelectronics, transportation, life sciences, mining, and multimedia. Each region specializes in one or several domains. For example, Montreal has a lot of companies specialized in video games while the North of Quebec has been developed around natural resources exploitation.
Quebec Immigration Helpful Links
Those willing to find a job in Quebec can avail of a few online resources. A very common resource for job search is Job Bank – the government website that helps you find jobs in any city of the province. Indeed is a popular site with job listings.
The Government of Quebec offers a few helpful online resources for newcomers. To find out more, go to YesMontreal and NewcomerJobsCanada. The first search result is the Association des Chirurgiens Dentists du Québec
However, prior to applying for a job in Quebec, you need to consider a few things. First, this is a Social Insurance Number without which you won’t be able to start working in Canada. Secondly, you will need to get your education credentials and qualification assessed by the Immigration, Diversité et Inclusion Québec. In fact, there are many credential assessment agencies and you need to make sure you have chosen the right one.
Foreign workers with skills in trade need a Red Seal certification. Finally, along with English, ensure your French language skills meet at least minimum standards. As previously mentioned, job seekers with good French knowledge, stand a better chance to find a job in Quebec. If you pass these steps, then as a foreign worker, you’ll need to find a Canadian employer who will be willing to secure a job offer for you so you can start the work permit application process.
If you are a citizen of one of the thirty countries that have a special agreement with the Canadian government, then to come to Canada, you might apply for a Working Holiday Visa for young people aged between 18-35. The program is based on the International Experience in Canada that doesn’t require a job offer.
There are ten universities in Quebec. These institutions are partially government and publicly funded.
Quebec province can boast one of the comprehensive systems of education in North America, offering competitive and worldwide recognized programs. The study programs correspond to modern requirements and are renewed on a regular basis. Quebec government puts education on the top priority list, so it allocates different funding, which exceeds an average indicator in Canada’s other provinces.
There’s one more advantage – annual education fee is one of the lowest in Canada. After completing secondary school, students may attend free pre-university or vocational programs through the province’s CEGEP. These schools offer, with free tuition, either two-year pre-university programs or three-year vocational programs for diplomas. Quebec chose this structure for its educational system in order to ensure that at least some amount of post-secondary education is universally accessible.
Quebec is the only province, where a vast number of inhabitants are French-speaking. Accordingly, more than 80% of the population speak the French language. However, there are colleges and universities that offer study in English. There are four prestigious universities in Canada – French University de Montreal and the University of Quebec in Montreal (UQAM), also English speaking universities - McGill University and Concordia University.
Quebec is a unique place in the whole of North America. And this is not just about its territory in this part of the world where French dominates but in a special, unique culture. The first settlers from France brought their traditions to these lands at the beginning of the XVII century, but as time passed, it brought significant changes in the customs, religious views, and life of Quebecers.
European culture combined with an Indian identity, English conservatism, American multinationalism, didn’t dissolve, but, on the contrary, was able to preserve that colorful core which is inherent only to the French. People refer to this special culture as neither American, nor European, but more primordially Quebec. And you can see this uniqueness in folklore, literature, architecture, even in the unusual atmosphere that reigns in Quebec.
The fine art of Quebec includes about 75 art schools, 75 centers of contemporary art, more than 180 professional galleries. The development of the Quebec cinema began in the middle of the last century and gained considerable success among the audience. Manon Brian, Gilles Charles, Francois Girard, Denis Vilnov and others made a huge contribution to the film industry of the province.
Despite its small population, Quebec is featured by a huge number of media representatives: a variety of printed publications in many languages of the world, about 150 radio stations, television networks. The most popular educational and cultural channel in Quebec, Télé-Québec, broadcasts cultural diversity, reflects social realities, pays attention to the environmental problems, promotes development and education of children, informs the inhabitants about events in all fields of science and life in general.
The one can notice the uniqueness of Quebec right away, first of all, in its architecture. Nowhere in North America will you find so many buildings decorated with picturesque patterns, statues, marble, arches, and columns, as it was in Europe. Despite the tendency towards modernity, very often, especially in rural areas of the province, you can see buildings that have preserved all the charm of past centuries. At the same time, the harsh winters made their corrections to the architecture: the buildings were warmed and became similar to the houses of the English with small windows, traditional fireplaces. The cities, such as Quebec and Montreal, absorbed both cultures: The North American skyscrapers coexist with elegant buildings of European style.
Quebec Main Cities
Montreal is Canada's second largest metropolis (4 million people, including suburbs), it’s unofficial cultural and entertainment capital. With a low cost of living, as well as the thriving IT sector, moving to the capital of Quebec can be an excellent choice for IT professionals wishing to immerse themselves in the French-speaking environment with the ability to communicate in English.
Montreal is located in the south-west of Quebec, only seventy kilometers from the Canadian-American border. The name comes from the mountain (in French "Mont-Royal"), on which the northwestern part of downtown sits. The waters of the rivers St. Lawrence and Ottawa surround the city from all sides. Thus, the townspeople live on a peculiar island, and to leave the city line, one must move through at least one bridge. Montreal is the world's largest city after Paris, where population mostly speaks French.
The townspeople are very proud of the hill which is 233 meters in height, nicknamed Royal Mountain. Three peaks are visible when approaching the city. Few big cities can boast an oasis of wildlife in the middle of the city. In the winter, Mont-Royal becomes a favorite place of leisure for the townspeople. Here you can ski, skate or play snowballs, and during other three seasons just enjoy the park area on the shores of an artificial lake, or stroll along the paths, competing for space with runners and cyclists. There is an observation platform on the hill, which offers a beautiful view of the center, and on days when the sky is clear, you can see the US states of New York and Vermont.
Real estate rental prices are lower than in English-speaking Canada. Utilities are inexpensive, but the cost of food remains at an average level. In general, the cost of living in Montreal is affordable, but this is compensated with relatively small salaries and high Quebec taxes.
Montreal is also interesting by its "underground", officially known as RESO, and commonly called la ville souterraine. It is a huge underground labyrinth with a length of 32 kilometers with 120 entry points, connecting subway stations, bus stops, shopping centers, offices, apartments, banks, universities (McGill and Montreal), bus station and Bell Center arena.
Housing in Quebec
You can choose from different types of accommodation in the province of Quebec. Apartment buildings are spacious and, usually, belong to one person or company available for rent. Families can find a larger apartment with more space, such as additional bedrooms, etc. A large multi-unit building where each unit belongs to the inhabitant is a condominium; each unit is a condo. The so-called “townhouses” represent a row of houses, which can be separated or individual. Duplexes and triplexes comprise from 2 or 3 separate apartments, one on top of another.
In contrast to other provinces of Canada, Quebec lists apartment by size: 1 1/2 equals to the studio with a bathroom, 2 1/2 is equivalent to an apartment consisting of a living room, kitchen, and a bedroom; 3 1/2 consists of a living room, a bedroom, and a kitchen; 4 1/2 is equivalent to an apartment with a living room, a kitchen and two bedrooms; 5 1/2 is equivalent to an apartment consisting of a living room, a kitchen, and three bedrooms.
When you arrive in Saskatchewan, for the first two weeks you may choose to live in a temporary place. Use Yellow Pages to find a list of hotels or motels.
Canada Immigration Helpful Links
People with low income can take advantage of the Co-Operative Housing and affordable housing programs. In co-operative housing, some tenants cover rent based on their income, while others pay market price rent. The idea is they together share responsibility for the housing.
Any property requires insurance. If something bad happens to your property, like damage, the insurance will cover the cost of repairs. In fact, banks will not proceed with a mortgage without insurance. To find an insurance broker, visit cooperators.ca.
If you choose to rent an apartment, you will have to pay your monthly rent, including utilities. You may need to pay for the parking place. As a rule, tenants must pay a security deposit, which they get back when they move out.
Pet lovers need to check with the landlord whether pets are legally allowed in the house they are planning to rent.
Quebec is the oldest city in North America. In 1608 the French explorer Samuel de Champlain founded Quebec on the banks of the St. Lawrence River. Until then, all other French settlements were temporary trading posts, but the expanding needs and the growing population of the French colony in the New World required the creation of a permanent settlement. Soon Quebec became the center of New France, and retained this status for centuries, despite short periods of British rule. In the XIX century Quebec gave way to the economic and political leadership to Montreal, but still remains the administrative center of the province.
The road between Montreal and Quebec City is part of a trans-Canadian highway that starts in the easternmost part of the country - in St. John's on the island of Newfoundland on the Atlantic coast, and ends in the west - in Victoria on Vancouver Island on the Pacific coast.
The most interesting part of the city is its historical center, the old city. The old part of the city is behind the fortress wall, built in the XVII century. It is believed that Quebec City is the only walled city in North America outside of Mexico. Most of the wall, although reconstructed, still exists.
Notre Dame de Quebec Cathedral is the main Catholic church of the country, the residence of the head of the Roman Catholic Church of Canada. Rebuilt many times, the church exists in this place since 1647.
Many residents work in the information and the service sector. Government administration creates most of the jobs, the same is with the region’s universities and colleges. Local history and natural beauty, making tourism a major industry in Quebec City.
Immigration to Quebec
The Canadian province of Quebec attracts a wide range of skilled workers, businessmen, family members of Quebecers and refugees.
The province uses a system called “Arima” similar to the Express Entry with requirements different from those of federal and other provincial immigration programs. So those who want to immigrate to Quebec must submit an expression of interest through the Arima portal. Qualified applicants receive an invitation from the Quebec Ministry of Immigration. After receiving an invitation, they need to apply for a permanent selection by sending the ministry the necessary documents.
Quebec runs the following immigration programs:
Quebec Skilled Worker Program
The Quebec Skilled Worker program is for international candidates who intend to settle in Quebec. You don’t need to have a job offer. However, you need to meet education, age, and language proficiency requirements.
An eligible candidate must score at least 50 points, while an applicant with a spouse must score a minimum 59 points under the Quebec selection factors grid. You will receive scores on many factors. A maximum of 26 points for education; master’s and Ph.D. degree holders get higher points. The more work experience you have, the more points you get – the highest score is 8. Not the least is your language ability in French or English for which you can get a maximum score of 22. Note, the priority is usually given to French-speaking applicants.
Other factors include close relatives in Canada (8points), accompanying spouse (17) or children (13-21 points). If you happen to secure a job offer from a Quebec province employer, you’ll receive 10 points. And finally, 1 point is awarded for the proof of having sufficient funds to settle in Quebec.
Quebec Experience Program
The Quebec experience program is for foreign skilled workers and international graduates who are already residing in Quebec.
High-skilled, semi-skilled and low-skilled workers should be working full-time in Quebec for the last two years, and at the time of the submission of the application, they should also be full-time employed.
To be eligible for the program, students must have studied in Quebec full-time and should be holders of the following types of diplomas: diploma of vocational studies, technical training diploma, bachelor’s degree, master’s degree or doctorate.
Quebec Investor Program
Eligible candidates should have a minimum personal net worth of $2,000 000 and be ready to invest $ 1,200, 000. It is important to have a business management experience. The candidate also can provide a language test certificate in French or English. However, this requirement is not mandatory, but if they do, they will get extra points for their application. Applicants will get points on other factors, such as education, financial self-sufficiency, etc.
The investment must be for a five-year period through the participation of a middleman in the investor program. The investment of CAD $1.2 million is guaranteed. It means that the Quebec government will reimburse its complete amount after five years.
Quebec Self-Employed Worker Program
The Quebec Self-Employed Program allows eligible candidates to create their own jobs.
Eligible candidates should make a start-up deposit of $25, 000 for business outside Montreal or 50,000 inside Montreal area. The minimum amount of a personal asset must be $100,000. It is important to have at least two years of experience as a self-employed worker. The candidate also can provide a language test certificate in French or English. However, this requirement is not mandatory, but if they do, they will get extra points for their application. Applicants will get points on other factors, such as education, financial self-sufficiency, etc.