Part 4: Québec City
Québec City, one of the French-speaking regions in Canada, has a strong connection and similarity with European cultures and could act as an easy entry point for European companies to access the North American market. Québec City offers ample support for businesses wanting to locate their offices in Québec City and its region.
10 reasons to locate your office in the Québec City region
Thierry Champagne, Managing Director of Foreign Investment at Québec International, lists the 10 reasons why Québec City region is good for ICT sector companies to set up their businesses:
- Safe environment for investments
- Strategic access to the markets
- Robust high-performance economy
- Strong, industrial diversity
- Ideal innovation platform
- A specialized and educated workforce
- Tax breaks and low costs
- World-class infrastructure
- Unbeatable quality of life
- Outstanding outreach and assistance network
Champagne also explains the advantageous operating costs in Québec City region. It’s 16.1% less expensive to set up an office and run business in the region compared to the American average. It’s also lower than Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver.
Growth in the ICT Sector
Mariona Ferrer, business development director of Digital Arts and Interactive Entertainment at Québec International, says that the ICT sector in the Québec City region is developing good engagements among companies such as gaming companies, animation studios, VFX studios, and academic organizations to make the ICT sector in Québec City grow together. It enables not only big companies from outside of Canada, but also local companies and studios to grow rapidly.
Ferrer adds that Québec City has succeeded in inviting and holding respected international events such as Pixel, Cartoon Connection 2016, and Comic Con to support and accelerate its ICT sector.
Support Offered to Foreign Companies
Carl Viel, President of Québec International, explains their role to support businesses and the economy of Québec City and the wider Québec region. They offer an easy one-stop service for success, which consists of six processes listed below.
- Attract foreign investments
- Support trade foreign market development
- Foster innovation and hi-tech entrepreneurship
- Attract qualified foreign workers
- Develop and promote key clusters
- Promote the competitive environment of the Québec City area
Viel says that their service contributed $189.4 million to the economy of the Québec City region in 2016. They managed 18 different projects and created about 300 jobs during 2016 with their support.
Québec City region enjoys a strong economy and it is attracting further foreign investments.
- Québec City is the only city in Canada where the GDP has been growing for 25 years in a row.
- The employment growth in Québec City region is 16.1% in 10 years.
- Québec City has the lowest unemployment rate (4.6%) in Canada in 2016.
- In 2015, the number of foreign subsidiaries in the region was about 250, and 48% of them are US-based and 31% are Europe-based, with nearly $100 billion invested over 10 years in the region.
- The number of jobs being created in Québec City region is larger than the number of people that arrive to the city.
- 52.3% of the population aged 15 to 44 is bilingual (French and English)
- Number 1 in Canada for the number of high-speed Internet access points per capita
- Number 1 in the world for its low operating costs among cities with over 100,000 inhabitants (KPMG Competitive Alternatives 2016)
- Number 1 tourist destination in Canada in 2016
- 40% of jobs created over the past 10 years were in the high-knowledge sector. It’s twice as much as for Canada as a whole (Statistics Canada)
- 3% of GDP invested in R&D (Ranked on the top 3 among Canadian and US cities)
Source: Québec International
(Top image is from Québec City Institutional Brochure.)