Applications for the Programme de l’expérience québécoise (PEQ or Quebec Experience Program) can be submitted online as of January 12 through the Arrima platform.
PEQ Applicants can therefore submit their application, pay the required fees and download the required documents through the platform.
Quebec has previously informed applicants that paper-based submissions may be used until January 25, 2021. After that date, it will be mandatory to submit all PEQ applications through an online process and the Quebec Ministry of Immigration will no longer accept any paper applications.
This is not the only program that will undergo this change.
While applicants to the Quebec Foreign Student Program have now been able to submit their applications through the platform since the spring of 2020, they will also be subject to the same mandatory online submission process as of January 26, 2021.
The Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration (MIFI) has also indicated that the submission of required documents under three new permanent immigration pilot projects, once launched, will have to be done electronically.
In the coming weeks, the province is expected to introduce three new permanent immigration pilot programs for workers in the health, computer and food processing sectors.
What is Arrima?
Arrima is an online platform used by the MIFI. Originally, Quebec introduced Arrima to collect expressions of interests from foreign nationals who wish to immigrate to Quebec through the Quebec Skilled Worker Program (QSWP).
Based on the information provided on the Arrima portal by the foreign national, MIFI assesses the submitted profiles according to factors such as education, language skills and work experience. Eligible individuals are invited to apply for a Quebec Selection Certificate (Certificat de sélection du Québec, or CSQ).
The new platform was launched in 2019 to speed up the processing of immigration applications and better align immigration with labour market needs. Prior to this change, Quebec’s immigration system was based on a first-come, first-served basis with delays of up to 36 months to obtain a CSQ.
Over the past two years, the province of Quebec has expanded this platform to include other programs and added new functionalities.
The Arrima portal is now not only available for QSWP applicants, but also to foreigners seeking to settle in Quebec permanently or temporarily through the Quebec International Student Program as well as the PEQ.
Immigration levels in Quebec
Quebec expects to welcome up to 47,500 newcomers in 2021. The province’s new targets are slightly higher than they were for 2020 when Quebec expected to welcome up to 44,500 newcomers. However, Quebec fell short of this target.
The francophone province, therefore, plans to make up the shortfall of between 13,000 and 18,000 immigrants for 2020 caused by the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on immigration levels to the province.
Most of the immigrants that Quebec is looking to admit in 2021 will come through the province’s economic immigration programs.
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