The new immigration pilots will focus on pathways for workers in health, food processing, and technology sectors.
On March 3, Quebec announced it will launch three new immigration pilots over the coming weeks.
The Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration (MIFI) is opening up the pilots for foreign nationals who work in the following three sectors:
- food processing;
- health (orderlies); and
- artificial intelligence, information technology and visual effects.
These pilots are expected to last for a maximum of five years. The goal is to attract and retain immigrants whose skills meet Quebec’s labour market needs.
MIFI will issue Quebec Selection Certificates (CSQ) to up to 550 principal applicants, annually, through each pilot. Applicants must work in eligible sectors in order to be selected. This figure does not include families.
Find out if you’re eligible for Canadian immigration
You will need to demonstrate that you can financially provide for yourself and your family for at least three months.
These programs also require applicants to be at least 18 years old.
Most of these stream require work experience in Quebec. If you are applying for one of these streams, you must have obtained your work experience with legal status. You must have been paid and worked at least 30 hours per week.
Here are some of the more specific eligibility requirements of each new program.
Pilot program for food processing workers
This pilot program is for foreign workers in the food processing sector. It is intended to help Quebec businesses retain their foreign labor force, and to remain competitive with other Canadian provinces.
The pilot will come into effect on March 24.
In order to receive a CSQ under this program, you need to be able to communicate orally in French, have work experience in Quebec in an eligible occupation, and be working in the province when you submit your application.
Some additional eligibility requirements include:
- hold a high school diploma or professional studies diploma from a program in Quebec;
- have held an eligible full-time job for at least 24 months in an eligible sector in Quebec during the three years prior to the application date; and
- demonstrate a knowledge of oral French at level 7, according to the Quebec scale of French proficiency levels for adult immigrants.
Eligible occupations include:
- Industrial butcher, meat cutter, poultry preparer and related workers (NOC 9462);
- Labourer in food and beverage processing (NOC 9617);
- Labourer in fish and seafood processing (NOC 9618);
- Specialized cleaner (NOC 6732);
- Machine and industrial process operator in food and beverage processing (NOC 9461);
- Agricultural worker, (NOC 8431) but only the job title “chicken picker;” and
- Worker in fish and seafood processing plants (NOC 9463);
Hire a lawyer who specializes in work permits
Pilot program for orderlies
This pilot is for temporary foreign workers who have worked as orderlies in Quebec for at least one year. Among other eligibility requirements, you must be proficient in spoken French and hold a job as an orderly in Quebec when submitting your application.
MIFI developed this program to reduce labour gaps in this sector, which have been exacerbated by the pandemic.
This program will launch on March 31.
There are two streams under this program: Work and Studies-work.
Work stream conditions
If you are applying under the Work stream, you must meet the following conditions:
- have a diploma related to working as an orderly, which you obtained following a one-year, full-time study program that corresponds to a Quebec diploma of vocational studies; and
- have at least 24 months of work experience as an orderly during the three years preceding your application date. At least 12 of these months must have been done in Quebec.
This program is specifically for people working as orderlies, as described under the National Occupational Classification (NOC) 3413— Nurse aide, orderly and patient service associate.
If you have worked in the health sector outside Quebec, it must be related to basic personal care in order to be considered eligible work experience.
Work-study stream conditions
If you are submitting an application under the Work-study stream, you must meet the following eligibility criteria:
- have graduated with a Quebec diploma of vocational studies leading to the occupation of orderly during the two years preceding the date you submitted your application; and
- have at least 12 months of work experience as an orderly in Quebec, acquired during the two years preceding the date of submission of your application, and after the completion date of your study program.
You also need to have successfully completed the Institutional and Home Care Assistance study program, and graduated with a secondary diploma of vocational studies.
Pilot program for workers in artificial intelligence, information technology and visual effects
This pilot program is intended to attract highly skilled tech workers to launch their careers in Quebec. It will also facilitate the retention of international students who received a specialized graduate degree from Quebec universities.
This pilot is scheduled to launch on April 22.
There are two streams under this pilot: Artificial intelligence, and Information technology and visual effects.
Under each stream there are two types of profiles: Francophone, and Francization. Francophone profiles must have an oral proficiency of 7 on the Quebec scale of French proficiency levels for adult immigrants. If you are selected under the Francization profile, you will automatically get registered with the Integration service for immigrants under Accompagnement Québec. This measure is supposed to help support your French learning.
Each year, MIFI intends to select 275 Quebec graduates and temporary workers in the artificial intelligence sector, and 275 foreign workers in the information technologies and visual effects sector. These figures do not include family members.
Artificial intelligence stream conditions
You can submit an application under the Artificial Intelligence stream as a foreign worker or as a Quebec graduate.
As a foreign worker, you need a diploma that corresponds to a Quebec bachelor’s degree and one of the following:
- two years of skilled work experience over the five years preceding your application; or
- a master’s or doctoral degree in the 12 months preceding your application.
Also, you need a full-time job offer, or be employed in the artificial intelligence sector.
If you are a Quebec graduate, in addition to a job offer, you must have graduated from a university with a higher specialized studies (DESS), master’s, or PhD during the two years preceding your application. DESS graduates need six months of work experience in the 12 months before the application date.
Information technologies and visual effects stream eligibility requirements
For this steam, you need to hold a diploma that corresponds to a Quebec diploma of college studies (technical training), or bachelor’s degree.
You need to be employed or have a job offer in Quebec, and have worked in an eligible full-time occupation for at least 24 months during the five years preceding the submission of your application.
To be eligible, your job must correspond to one of the following occupations:
- Information systems analyst and consultant (NOC 2171);
- Graphic designer and illustrator, (NOC 5241) but only if your job is in the visual effects sector;
- Computer and information systems manager (NOC 0213)
- Software engineer and designer (NOC 2173)
- Electrical and electronics engineer (NOC 2133)
- Producer, director, choreographer and related occupations, (NOC 2133) but only if your job is in the visual effects sector;
- Computer programmer and interactive media developer (NOC 2174)
- Audio and video recording technician, (NOC 5225) but only if your job is in the visual effects sector;
- Computer network technician (NOC 2281); or
- Electrical and electronics engineering technologist and technician (NOC 2241).