The Quebec Entrepreneur Program which is a Canadian immigration program is designed to assist foreign business owners to launch entrepreneurial endeavours within the province of Quebec.
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This is often an exclusive immigration opportunity for foreign entrepreneurs who have the financial resources and business ownership experience needed to launch a brand-new business project in Quebec. Individuals who are successful with their applications become Canadian permanent residents.
Please note that even though this immigration program is grounded within the French-speaking province of Quebec, French-language proficiency isn’t required for applicants.
Nonetheless, proficiency in language could also be taken under consideration when selecting applicants.
As of January 1, 2020, all applicants for permanent residence through Quebec immigration programs are required to prove and show they understand Quebec values. this will be done by passing a Quebec values test or completing a course in Quebec values.
Who is Eligible to Apply to the Quebec Entrepreneur Program?
The Quebec Entrepreneur Program has two divisions of streams, each with distinct eligibility criteria:
In order to be eligible for Stream one of the Quebec Entrepreneur Program, the intending immigrant entrepreneur must present a business project idea for a business they have an intention to create and operate from within Quebec.
Applicants must have already obtained a service offer from a Quebec-based business accelerator, business incubator, or university entrepreneurship centre.
Quebec doesn’t have a catalogue of accelerators, incubators, and entrepreneurship centres that are eligible to support immigrant entrepreneurs.
There are no available regulated criteria to consult these organizations, but interested applicants can consult this list for samples of projects undertaken by these sorts of business organizations in Quebec.
To support their business project, the immigrant entrepreneur applicant must demonstrate that the business incubator, business accelerator, or university entrepreneurship centre meets the proper acceptable definition:
- Business accelerator: Quebec organizations offering support services, especially in securing funding, to entrepreneurs whose projects are aimed toward the progression growth of innovative companies.
- Business incubator: Quebec organizations offering mentoring services, including hosting, to entrepreneurs with business projects aimed toward creating innovative businesses.
- University entrepreneurship centre: Quebec organizations managed by academic institutions, or affiliated organizations that provide mentoring services to entrepreneurs.
When submitting an application to the Quebec Entrepreneur Program, a central component is that of the written service offer from the Quebec organization to support the immigrant entrepreneur’s business project.
This written offer must present the services the organization intends to supply the entrepreneur and must present: an in-depth support plan, an operations plan, and budget, as well as the organization’s expertise in its field.
In order to be eligible for Stream Two of the Quebec Entrepreneur Program, the intending immigrant entrepreneur must settle in Quebec to make an up-to-the-minute business or purchase an existing business.
Applicants are going to be demanded to submit their business idea within the sort of a business plan as a part of their application.
Entrepreneurs choosing to make a business must own and control a minimum of 25 percent of their equity capital, while those choosing to accumulate a business must own and control a minimum of 51 percent of their equity capital.
Additionally, the business must have been operational within the five years before application, and haven’t been purchased from another immigrant entrepreneur selected under this program within the previous five years.
The applicant must make a startup deposit and a binder with a financial organization in Quebec. The least amount for startup deposit is CAD $200,000 for businesses located outside of Montreal and CAD $300,000 for Montreal-based businesses.
The startup deposit should be used to set up the business. The binder is CAD $200,000 and can be refunded when an applicant demonstrates that they have administered their business plan.
Please note that in late 2020 Quebec undertook a review of the startup and binder requirements and is likely to suspend these requirements for applications received before the first day of November 2020.
All applicants must have a minimum personal net worth of CAD $900,000 (this can include a spouse or partner’s net worth).
Businesses associated with payday loans, pawnbroking, real estate development or insurance, and the sex industry aren’t eligible for this program.
How to Apply For Quebec Entrepreneur Program
The Quebec Entrepreneur Program only accepts applications during specific intake periods. Stream One is accepting up to 25 applications between the 1st of November 2020 and September 30, 2021. Stream Two is paused until a minimum of November 1st, 2021.
French-speaking applicants are exempt from the program’s intake periods and quotas. To prove and show French-language proficiency, applicants must submit results from an approved language test.
Quebec uses a two-step application process to take in new permanent residents.
- Selection: Selection occurs at the provincial level. All Quebec immigration applicants must apply to the province of Quebec for a Certificat de sélection du Québec (CSQ).
- Admission: Admission occurs at the federal level. Once an individual obtains a CSQ, they need to apply to the federal level government for a Canadian permanent resident status. As it is with all permanent residence applications, applicants must undergo a medical checkup and police background check to make sure they’re admissible to Canada.
Once an application has been approved at both the provincial and federal levels, an applicant becomes a Canadian permanent resident.
To apply to the program, entrepreneurs have to prepare a paper-based application. The application must include an in-depth business plan, supporting documentation as demanded (associated with private net worth, education, language proficiency, etc.).
Full details regarding mandatory forms and supporting documents are often found on the website of the Ministere de l’mmigration et de la diversité (MIDI).
Completed applications must be submitted by courier to the Direction de l’enregistrement et de l’évaluation comparative within the city of Montreal.
If an application is approved, the entrepreneur will be given their CSQ, enabling them to apply for permanent residence.
What other Canadian Immigration Options Exist for Entrepreneurs?
Canada offers various immigration options for entrepreneurs seeking to launch business ideas in Canada. The Start-up Visa Program is a superb option for talented foreign entrepreneurs who have secured the support of a delegated Canadian business.
Additionally, many Canadian provinces aside from Quebec also offer entrepreneurial immigration programs through Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) streams. Popular entrepreneurial Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP) streams include Ontario and British Columbia.