On October 28, 2021, the Quebec government announced its immigration level target of inviting 52,500 new immigrants in 2022. This comes after the province’s plan to increase immigration post-pandemic to support economic recovery.
Why Does Quebec Need High Immigration Numbers?
Currently, Quebec has the lowest unemployment rate in Canada. In September, the unemployment rate in Quebec was at 5.9% while it was 7.1% nationally. The low unemployment rate can be attributed to its retiring population. Over 20% of Quebec’s population is 65 years old or older, compared to 18.5% nationally. Quebec also has low birth rates compared to the national average and the lowest immigration rates per capita.
All these factors contribute to a labor shortage in the province. Quebec has the highest job vacancy rate in Canada, according to Statistics Canada. These labor shortages make it difficult for employers to operate at full capacity and meet the demands of their consumers. It also hurts the economy and makes it difficult for employers to invest in the province.
Labor shortages are among the most significant problems faced by Quebec. Stakeholders across the province have argued to increase the immigration rate to meet these shortages. In July, the Quebec Employers Council wrote an article providing 10 solutions to the labor shortage problem. Two of these were concerned with increasing immigration levels by reforming the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP). According to a report published by the Quebec Manufacturers and Exports, labor shortages cost the province over $18 billion in the last 2 years. Therefore, the only way to solve this is by inviting more immigrant workers to settle in Quebec. See Quebec Immigration for its programs.