At a time when many states are embarking on the energy transition, Québec wants to seize the opportunity to strengthen its economic relations and strengthen partnerships in the sectors of the future with the countries and regions of Europe by focusing on creativity. as well as its green technologies.
The Minister of International Relations and La Francophonie and Minister in charge of the Laurentians region, Nadine Girault, has detailed Quebec’s new game plan, included in the Territorial Strategy for Europe, which she recently unveiled. Building on a new coordinated approach at the continental level, several actions will be implemented to strengthen Québec’s action in Europe. An additional $2 million will be allocated to the execution of the strategy.
“The European continent is Québec’s second largest export market, after the United States. This strategy aims to build on innovation, economic diplomacy and the dynamism of the major European economies to increase Québec’s export volume and attract European investors to our country. Together with our partners in Europe, we are resolutely committed to decarbonising the economy and supporting sustainable development,” explains the minister.
Over the past five years, Quebec has exported approximately $11 billion worth of goods to Europe on average per year, which is also a major source of investment. In 2020, European investment represented 49% of total foreign investment in Quebec.
With 750 million inhabitants and almost a quarter of the planet’s GDP, Europe is one of the most important consumer markets in the world. The 27 countries of the European Union are now the largest trading bloc in the world. Furthermore, Germany, the United Kingdom, France and Italy are among the strongest economies in the world.
“Quebec shares many common values with European countries, including democracy and the rule of law, respect for human rights, valuing diversity and pursuing gender equality. We must take advantage of this cultural proximity to strengthen our relations with Europe and boost Quebec’s innovation in the territory, taking greater advantage of trade agreements and European public markets,” continues Ms Girault.
Quebec’s Representations in Europe will step up their efforts to open new markets for Quebec companies on the continent, recruit talent and manpower, promote student and professional mobility, support researchers and scientists who want to join the great knowledge networks and the artists and makers from Quebec who wish to support this. to spread their art in Europe.
To maximize the spin-offs of Québec’s action in Europe, Québec will focus on a new coordinated continental approach at European level. In this regard, the Délégation générale du Québec in Brussels, due to its mandate with the European institutions, will play a greater role in business intelligence to seize the opportunities offered by economic agreements and public procurement, recovery plans and energy transition and research and innovation programmes.
“With this strategy, Québec also wants to continue to assert itself as an important partner for sustainable prosperity with its European partners, by promoting green technologies and the development of the battery industry,” the minister added.
New partnerships with Europe in education, research and innovation, language and culture are also being considered.
The pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine have caused multiple economic, geopolitical and humanitarian upheavals worldwide, but especially in Europe. In this context, it is all the more necessary for Québec to adopt clear and unified orientations in order to act effectively in this turbulent period. The implementation of the strategy will be adapted to the evolution of the situation.
For more information, see the Territorial Strategy for Europe