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CANADA: New Qu├ębec Skilled Worker Program Requirements

On August 1, 2013, several important legislative changes took effect to the Québec Regular Skilled Worker Program and the Québec Experience Program for Temporary Workers. These changes will remain effective until March 31, 2014. The Québec Regular Skilled Worker Program requires applicants to attain a sufficient number of points to be issued Québec Selection Certificates enabling applications for Canadian permanent residence. The Québec Experience Program for Temporary Workers and for graduating students is an accelerated program that permits qualifying workers who hold full-time skilled jobs in Québec for at least one year, and certain graduating college and university students, to be issued Québec Selection Certificates for permanent residence.

One major change to the Québec Regular Skilled Worker Program is the elimination of the educational requirement for applicants under the List of Areas of Training of the Québec Ministry of Immigration and Cultural Communities (MICC). While applicants will continue to be attributed points if their education is on the list, it is no longer required to qualify for the Québec Regular Skilled Worker Program. A maximum number of 20,000 skilled worker applications will be accepted.

A new order of priority for application processing has been established. Applications are processed in the following priority order: (1) applications to the Québec Experience Program; (2) applications to the Québec Regular Skilled Worker Program that include a validated employment offer; (3) applications to the Québec Regular Skilled Worker Program from applicants who are attributed points for their area of education; and (4) all other applications submitted under the Québec Regular Skilled Worker Program.

The French language requirements have increased for the Québec Regular Skilled Worker Program and the Québec Experience Program. For the Québec Regular Skilled Worker Program, points are now awarded for both oral and written knowledge of French, instead of the previous requirement of exclusively oral knowledge of French. Applicants are only attributed points for their knowledge of French if they demonstrate an advanced intermediate level. For the Québec Experience Program, applicants can only qualify now if they demonstrate an advanced intermediate-level oral knowledge of French, instead of the previous requirement of an intermediate-level oral knowledge of French.

More information on these changes and answers to frequently asked questions are available at the QUÉBEC MICC WEBSITE.

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