The much anticipated announcement is finally here. The Quebec government has finally agreed to reform the Quebec Experience Program (QEP). As part of the reforms, the government will further launch two more programs. The changes to the QEP or Programme de l’expérience Québécoise are expected to take effect in the coming weeks. This program was launched in 2010 as a fast-track immigration alternative to permanent residence for temporary foreign workers and students who have been living in the province.
Quebec had previously announced significant reforms to the program in 2019 but had to back-track due to public criticism. Notably, the changes were unfair to foreign workers and international students already residing in Quebec. The changes from the 2019 announcement would have deemed a permanent residence status of a good number of them ineligible.
Main Objectives for Reform to The QEP
According to Quebec’s minister for Immigration, Simon-Jolin Barrette, there are four primary objectives behind the upcoming reforms to the Quebec Experience Program, which include;
- Improved Integration into The Labour Market
- Enhanced Efficiency in The Selection Process of Candidates to Meet Quebec’s Labour Market Needs.
- Proficiency in The French Language for Better Social and Economic Integration
- Uncompromised Program Integrity.
The Program Will Require More Work Experience of the Temporary Residents
The province will introduce additional work experience requirements to the temporary foreign residence to facilitate smooth integration into the province’s labour market and society.
The new reforms will require temporary foreign work (TFW) to have at least 36 months of full-time work experience within 48 months before applying for permanent residence. On a positive note, the new reforms will comprise transition measures that will include the foreign workers who held a valid work permit before the new reforms will be enacted into law in the coming few weeks.