Québec

Dynamic and Diverse

A strategic location between Europe and the Americas, Québec offers an abundance and variety of natural resources, highly-skilled, multilingual workers, a vibrant cultural community and an exceptionally high quality of life. Add to these advantages Québec ’s steadfast commitment to R&D, and you have one of the country’s most innovative economies, with high technology industries and ‘green’ energy increasing prosperity in the 21st century.

Business Environment

  • GDP of CDN $301 billion in 2008, 60% generated by the service sector
  • GDP per person 18th in the OECD, comparable to Germany and Italy , surpassing Spain
  • Tax rates on business profits among the lowest in North America
  • Tax incentives and labour force assistance and training programs ($2.5 billion annually)
  • Exports account for 33% of GDP , with 72% of international exports shipped to the US
  • Access to NAFTA market of over 440 million consumers
  • A market of 110 million consumers within a 1000 km radius
  • Within a 600 mile radius of Boston , New York , Washington and Detroit
  • #1 exporter of newsprint, 2nd largest magnesium producer and 4th largest aluminum producer in the world
  • The St. Lawrence Seaway offers easy access to the industrial heart of North America

Workforce

  • Highly-educated workforce—19 universities produce 65,000 graduates annually
  • 85% of workers have post-secondary or more , 22% a university degree
  • Highly bilingual and multilingual workforce—40% speak French and English; 13% speak a third language

Other Key Advantages

  • Quebec ranks among the 10 most important health sciences industrial pools in North America. As a proof, the ten largest pharmaceutical companies in the world have operations in Quebec: Canadian head office, fundamental R&D or manufacturing facilities.
  • Nearly half of the Canadian biopharmaceutical industry and most of the basic and clinical research activities are concentrated in Quebec
  • Over 62% of overall Canadian aerospace industry production takes place in Québec
  • Internationally, the Greater Montréal region is considered one of the major world centres for aeronautics, on the same level as Seattle, Wichita and Toulouse
  • Montréal also has one of the highest concentrations of high-tech jobs in North America along with San Francisco, Seattle and Boston
  • Clean energy producer supplying electricity to other parts of Canada and the US
  • R&D spending—2.7% of GDP—is the highest in Canada and higher than the average of the OECD, the G7 and the European Union. Furthermore, Québec’s objective is to invest 3% of GDP in R&D by 2010
  • Over 200 specialized university R&D centres—McGill is the Canadian university awarded the most patents by the US Patent and Trademark Office
  • Private and public capital to fund investment projects
  • Efficient road and rail networks and airport infrastructure
  • 110 international financial centres
  • Montreal Stock Exchange a Canadian hub for financial risk management and a significant partner in specialized markets in North America
  • Home of the Canadian Space Agency

Sector Strengths

  • Aerospace
  • Agriculture & Agri-food
  • Automotive & Ground Transportation Equipment
  • Biopharmaceuticals
  • Construction
  • Energy (hydro-electric & wind)
  • Environment
  • Forestry
  • Financial Services
  • Genomics
  • Information & Communications Technologies
  • Information Technologies & Software
  • Light Metals
  • Microelectronics
  • Mining
  • Multimedia
  • Textiles
  • Tourism