Quebec announces major changes to the Quebec Experience Program (PEQ)
On Thursday, May 28, the Quebec Minister of Immigration, Francisation and Integration, Simon Jolin-Barrette, announced major upcoming changes to the Quebec Experience Program (Programme de l’expérience québécoise PEQ). This announcement came months after controversial reforms to the PEQ proposed by the Quebec government last year.
The renewed PEQ is expected to meet four objectives: better integration of prospective immigrants into the Quebec labour market, a more efficient selection of candidates to meet the needs of the Quebec labour market, French language competence that facilitates integration; and reinforced program integrity.
Under the new program, prospective candidates will need more qualifying work experience.
Temporary foreign workers residing in Quebec will now need to accumulate 36 months of full-time work experience during the 48 months preceding their application. Before, the required period of work experience was 12 months.
Quebec graduates will need to acquire 12 or 24 months of full-time work experience (depending on their level of studies) prior to applying for permanent residence under the PEQ.
Spouses of PEQ applicants will also be required to meet certain standards of French language competency, more specifically, a level 4 in the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB).
The Ministry is also committing to processing PEQ applications within six months.
In addition to the above announcements, the Quebec government advised that it is planning to launch two new immigration pilots. One of these pilots will target beneficiary attendants and the other one will be catered to technology and artificial intelligence workers.