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“No choice” to welcome more immigrants to Quebec, says the PLQ

Photo: Jacques Boissinot The Canadian Press Immigration, “this is the challenge that faces us,” said Liberal Leader Tanguay on Wednesday. “In Quebec, we are going to need more in the coming years. There, for the moment, we have 500,000 temporary workers and we are not responding to their essential requests. This must be resolved as quickly as possible.”

Marie-Michèle Sioui in Thetford Mines

7:30 p.m.

  • Quebec

Quebec will have “no choice” to welcome more immigrants in the coming years, and it must therefore tackle “as hard as possible” the essential demands of immigrants who are already in the territory, declared Wednesday morning the interim leader of the Liberal Party of Quebec, Marc Tanguay.

“The threshold debate is a debate that is behind us,” he said upon his arrival at his party’s caucus, meeting for three days in Thetford Mines in anticipation of the parliamentary session, which resumes on January 30.

The PLQ, which promised during the electoral campaign to raise the permanent immigration thresholds to 70,000 annually, has since suggested that it could revise this target, either upwards or downwards.

However, given the explosion in the number of temporary immigrants in Quebec – there were 528,000 present in the territory on October 1 – the debate on permanent immigration thresholds no longer has its place, judge the liberals.

Immigration, “this is the challenge that faces us,” said Chief Tanguay. “In Quebec, we are going to need more in the coming years. There, for the moment, we have 500,000 temporary workers and we are not meeting their essential requests. This needs to be resolved as quickly as possible. »

“No choice” to welcome more

In his opinion, “we will have no choice” to welcome more immigrants to Quebec, “for our economy.” Until then, “we must work on the 500,000 who are in Quebec, and we must ensure that we meet the needs,” he added, specifying that francization “is a big deal” and that the housing supply is insufficient.

According to Marc Tanguay, Prime Minister François Legault uttered the “biggest lie of the modern era in Quebec” by asserting that fewer immigrants should be taken into Quebec, but “take care of them “.

“The responsibility of the government of Quebec is to work on the capacity to integrate [immigrants]. That’s 1.6 million additional workers that we need for the next few years [by 2030]. We need to work on that,” he insisted.

The Liberal leader has stated on several occasions that the half-million temporary immigrants present in Quebec are workers. “The 500,000 are working this morning, we need them. These are women and men who today have stood up and who work in the private sector, in the public sector, who provide essential services to our economy,” he said in particular.

In fact, of the 528,000 non-permanent residents present in Quebec, 43% are workers. This percentage rises to 51% if we take into account immigrants who have study permits and work permits.

A minister for SMEs

The Liberals also asked the Legault government to bring back the position of Minister responsible for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). Lucie Lecours was appointed to this role in March 2021. She has since been replaced as Minister Delegate for the Economy by Christopher Skeete.

Since the Minister of the Economy, Pierre Fitzgibbon, “only has eyes for attempts to have big deals », the Prime Minister must ensure that an elected official takes care of SMEs “morning, noon, evening”.

“This is the hell that François Legault managed to achieve. Hell for entrepreneurs in Quebec. So we are asking for [a minister responsible for SMEs] now that we know that he said that there will be no cabinet reshuffle [by June],” said the interim leader.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116