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A budget that delivers on our goal to make Greater Montréal more attractive to businesses

March 31, 2017

Québec’s 2017-2018 Budget – Spending boost for high-tech sectors and international promotion efforts

Montréal International welcomes the Québec Government’s new budget and the various measures announced to stimulate economic growth in Greater Montréal and strengthen the region’s ability to attract and retain investment and foreign workers in high-tech sectors.

A $100-million investment to promote Québec internationally

Montréal International is pleased to receive an additional $3.5 million from the Government of Québec over five years to better promote Greater Montréal internationally and conduct more outbound investment missions. “Foreign investment is a key driver of economic growth and development, and additional financial support from the Government will help us bring more of it to Greater Montréal,” said Hubert Bolduc, President and CEO of Montréal International.

Mr. Bolduc also welcomed the additional funding provided to Investissement Québec, which will enable the firm to better coordinate its actions with Québec International and Montréal International. “Our ability to work together, act fast and stay agile is one of the main things global businesses look at when deciding to locate in Montréal.”

The Government of Québec will soon unveil Québec’s future international policy designed to attract and support international events that are consistent with government priorities. “International organizations are a critical factor in attracting such events and raising Montréal’s international profile. That’s why the new policy should focus on efforts to attract international organizations and provide increased support for such initiatives,” Mr. Bolduc added.

Substantial amounts earmarked for the development of high-tech sectors

Of all the industry-specific measures announced in the budget, Montréal International particularly welcomes those intended to further the development of artificial intelligence and life sciences—two sectors that make Montréal a magnet for talent and businesses.

The Government announced a $100-million investment over five years to create an artificial intelligence super-cluster, with $50 million to be invested this year. The measure will help cement the region’s position as a world-class centre of excellence and enhance its ability to attract foreign talent and investment. Québec’s new life sciences strategy, which will be unveiled in spring 2017 and will receive over $150 million, will also facilitate Montréal International’s efforts to promote the region and engage new investment opportunities.

More international students to address the shortage of skilled workers

Montréal International praises the Government’s commitment to invest $13.5 million over five years in designing a strategy to attract international students to Québec. The new strategy, combined with Montréal International’s current project to retain foreign students, will provide Montréal with the means to leverage its status as the world’s best student city. “Greater Montréal is in desperate need of skilled workers—and attracting and retaining international students is one of the best ways to address that need,” Mr. Bolduc explained.