Quebec Immigration Plan 2024: Key Updates and Policy Changes

The Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration (MIFI) recently unveiled its Immigration Plan for 2024, outlining its approach to meet the demographic, economic and social challenges facing the province of Quebec.

In this article, we decrypt for you the main changes and measures resulting from this plan.

Quebec’s Immigration Policy Objectives for 2024

MIFI’s 2024 Immigration Plan aims to increase the total number of new immigrants in Quebec. Particular emphasis is placed on attracting young immigrants through economic immigration programs. The plan also stresses the importance of preserving Quebec’s linguistic and cultural heritage.

1- Up to 64,600 Permanent Immigrants by 2024

The Legault government plans to welcome up to 64,600 immigrants in 2024, including foreign students and business people.

Breaking down the figures presented at the most recent press conference at the Quebec National Assembly by Prime Minister François Legault and Immigration Minister Christine Fréchette, the government plan for the year 2024 anticipates:

  • New admissions: a maximum of 51,500 immigrants in “regular admissions” (economic immigration, family reunification and refugees);

  • The selection of 6,500 foreign students from the ‘Québec Graduates’ stream of the Quebec Experience Program (PEQ) will have a positive impact on the proportion of Quebec selection, the proportion of economic immigration, and the proportion of immigrants who will speak French.

  • The processing of 5,400 to 6,600 applications in the business category, for a total of 64,600 permanent immigrants.

  • For the year 2025, the government’s program does not include forecasts for the selection of foreign students and business people.

  • Focus on French language proficiency and social integration: Quebec’s immigration plan for 2024 seeks a balance between selecting immigrants who master the French language, encouraging the arrival of younger candidates to counter the aging of the population, promoting integration and stimulating economic development within the province.

2- French Language Proficiency Requirements

Immigration is one of the keys to ensuring the long-term survival of the French language in Quebec.

That’s why the government has mandated French language proficiency for economic immigrants, such as skilled workers, students enrolled in the Quebec Experience Program, entrepreneurs and others wishing to settle in Quebec.

Since June 2023, immigrants wishing to settle permanently in Quebec must declare a minimum knowledge of French, assessed at levels 5 in writing and 7 in speaking. This initiative marks a historic first for Quebec, as no previous administration, whether Parti Québécois or Liberal, had ever required French language proficiency as a condition for economic immigrant admission.

This decision also aims to increase the proportion of economic immigrants proficient in French.

In 2023, this proportion was 81%, and according to projections, it will reach 89% in 2024 and 93% in 2025.

RSWP versus SWSP

The Skilled Worker Selection Program (SWSP) is a new initiative that will replace the Regular Skilled Worker Program(RSWP) on November 29, 2024.

Unlike the RSWP selection grid, which evaluated candidates on nine factors, MIFI will adopt a different approach for the SWSP

The SWSP consists of four distinct streams designed to select skilled workers based on their skill level, field of activity, regulated occupation or exceptional talents. These streams include the following categories:

  • Highly qualified and specialized skills;

  • Intermediate and manual skills;

  • Regulated professions;

  • Exceptional talents

The SWSP Highlights :

  • Spouses accompanying applicants under sections 1, 2 or 3 must also prove a level 4 of oral proficiency in French.

  • The SWSP will come into effect on November 29, 2024.

Continued Immigration Planning

The provincial government has chosen to develop a two-year plan instead of a four-year plan. Minister Fréchette explained this decision by emphasizing the need for a shorter planning period to evaluate the impact of francization measures in Quebec and adjust government actions accordingly.

This immigration plan marked a major political change in immigration matters – a historic plan, as they say on numerous occasions – and calls on us all to become active players in these changes.

Over the past five years, Vitae has successfully guided numerous companies through their recruitment processes. Our approach entails a meticulous recruitment and selection process, emphasizing integration and highlighting the importance of French in daily life in Quebec. Vitae adapts to any reality, whether you are looking for French or English proficient labor force. 

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