Quebec Budget 2022: Strengthening the Economy, Environment, and More

Quebec, one of Canada’s largest Provinces and economies, has released their provincial Quebec budget 2022. The budget is responsible for outlining the government’s plans for the coming months and how they plan to finance these programs. Budgets outline new/updated government funding programs, program streams, tax incentives, and more.

Since government budgets are long and complex documents, we have reviewed this year’s copy and extracted crucial government funding information that Canadian businesses, not-for-profit organizations, and communities should know.

Quebec budget 2022 has been presented in the shadow of an emerging economy from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In this context, I think it is fair to say that Québec has persevered. Our people rose to the challenge of fighting the pandemic, despite all the restrictions this required.

And that same perseverance will carry us through the turbulence facing the global economy. The budget I am tabling today is being presented in a context of great uncertainty: we do not know how the pandemic may evolve, inflation is currently high, and central banks are tightening their monetary policy. Added to this is the tense geopolitical context, marked by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.”

Eric Girard Minister of Finance of Quebec

The key priorities of the 2022–23 budget are: economic development, environmental concerns, cost of living, health care, culture, and community support.

Investing in Quebec’s Economic Development

Quebec will be allocating approximately $4.2 billion via the 2022–23 budget for economic growth initiatives. The goal is to ramp up economic output as the province begins to exit the COVID-19 pandemic with the following investments in research and development, exporting, digital technology, and more:

Research and Innovation

  • $1.3 billion for Quebec to launch an initiative called the Quebec Research and Innovation Strategy (QRIS), which will span five years between 2022–2027. This program will boost collaborative research, increase access to research and innovation expertise for businesses, and drive technology innovation via entrepreneurs;
  • $600 million to invest in new and innovative businesses that will stimulate Quebec’s growth, $100 million of which will be allotted to the Impulsion PME Program which helps new and innovative businesses access capital at the start-up level;
  • Research and development tax credits will also be included in the QRIS, which will allow Quebec businesses to claim up to 30% of eligible expenses related to innovative R&D, such as salaries for researchers in university research, private partnership research, and more. This support will allot up to $2.7 billion over the next five years for up to 4,000 businesses per year (page 146);
  • The Incentive Deduction for the Commercialization of Innovations (IDCI) will benefit businesses that commercialize their intellectual property by administering an effective tax rate of 2% on taxable income that can be attributed to the commercialization of intellectual property in Quebec. IDCI represents up to $176 million reduction in tax burdens; and
  • $100 to the Quebec Life Sciences Strategy for the revamping of this program that aims to limit the province’s dependence on imports by strengthening Quebec’s life sciences initiatives, improving technology and digital infrastructure for intriguing private businesses, and improving talent and human capital to meet emerging needs.

Minerals

  • $15 million over three years for the testing and demonstration of new critical and strategic minerals (CSMs) that are crucial to battery manufacturing and renewable energy.

Accelerating the Digital Shift for Businesses

  • $60 million over two years to accelerate Quebec’s digital shift offensive to help businesses in various sectors adapt to digital technology;
  • $30 million to improve mobile coverage across major roadways and inhabited areas;
  • $100 million over two years for the creation of a new cybersecurity enhancement provincial funding program to protect businesses against cyber attacks and threats;
  • $152.7 million to launch a new program called VISION via Revenue Quebec that will help businesses and individuals meet necessary tax obligations;
  • $38 million over five years to further support the Tax Fairness Action Plan to increase accessibility for Quebecers during their tax obligations; and
  • $57.5 million over three years to implement a future entrepreneurship plan that will help entrepreneurs obtain the equipment and skills they need to succeed, as well as reinvesting in the Fonds de transfert d’entreprise du Québec.

Exports

  • $503 million for a new plan to increase Quebec’s exporting via financial assistance and strategic partnerships with experts in exporting for businesses.

Support for Immigrant Workers

  • $198 million over five years to create a new program that will help immigrant workers learn French by funding workplace French courses domestically and to select immigrants before they arrive in Quebec; and
  • $80 million over four years to attract new skilled immigrants by reducing tuition fees for foreign students in sectors covered by Opération main-d’œuvre.

Investments for Regional Economic Development

  • $255 million invested to support regional air transportation that will make air services easily accessible to Quebecers, as well as $21 million in emergency investments to help regional air transportation recover from the pandemic ($16 million for air carriers and $5 million for administration costs);
  • $114.2 million to invest in local land transportation infrastructure projects to help increase air transit capacity for local businesses;
  • $38.8 million to regional county municipalities (RCMs) over five years for RCMs to disperse to industrial projects, and land development projects to obtain land-ready certifications for investment from private organizations; and
  • $20 million to a new buy-local program that will help businesses products and services online, adapt new business logistics, and improve supply chain functionality.

Growing the Bio-Food Sector

  • $562 million over three years to advance the Alimenter notre monde (bio-food policy) that will be invested in financing bio-food processing, food autonomy, and agriculture projects. Funding from this allotment will also be used for improving aquaculture and fisheries, driving research and innovation in bio-food, and supporting market processes;
  • $15 million for addressing Quebec’s labour shortage in the bio-food sector by advertising jobs more and enhancing education for bio-food-related fields, such as veterinarians, agri-inspection, and industrial slaughter;
  • $50 million over two years to provide another influx of funding for the La Financière agricole du Québec’s Growth Investment Program which invests in business applicants that are trying to improve their productivity output and sustainability in the bio-food market; and
  • $10 million to the Capital Financière agricole initiative which drives growth for agri-food sector businesses.

Investing in Forestry

  • $75 million to the Programme Innovation Bois (Wood Innovation Program) which invests in businesses that are providing innovative solutions to the forestry sector;
  • $15 million for a new program to improve the forestry sectors supply-chain issues; and
  • $50 million for improving multi-use roads for timber harvesting and safety purposes.

Tourism Sector

  • $108 million to provide further help to the tourism sector in its recovery from the global pandemic by offering financial assistance, stimulating tourism business investment, and helping with capacity-increasing measures;
  • $6 million will be further invested in the Concerted Temporary Action Program for Businesses (PACTE-Tourisme) which will allow for certain businesses to apply for a loan forgiveness on their energy expenses;
  • $134 million to the Tourism Industry Recovery Assistance Program (PARIT) which offers business subsidies for projects such as construction, infrastructure, expansion initiatives, and more;
  • $102 million over five years to support festivals, consolidate tourism expertise for local businesses, and develop partnership agreements with local tourism associations; and
  • $15 million to stimulate further investments from the Program Supporting the Development of Tourist Attractions (PADAT) which is designed to help hotel businesses renovate their facilities and tourist attractions.

Culture

Labour

  • $75 million by 2027 to help promote internships for students in the health and social services sectors, as well as support collaborations between post-secondary institutions and organizations in health and social services.

Investing in the Environment

Investments by the Quebec budget 2022 will amount to at least $7.6 billion over five years to achieve the goals laid out in their Green Economy plan. These investments are focusing on making transportation, energy, and prominent industries more environmentally friendly:

Clean Transportation

  • The Quebec government will continue to fund the Roulez Vert Program to assist in the purchasing of new or used electric vehicles to accelerate Quebec’s transition to cleaner transportation;
  • Increased investments in the Climate Change Fund where $117.2 million will be invested in the city of Montreal to finance climate change measures, such as renewable energy and 800 new public charging stations for electric vehicles; and
  • $49 million to the city of Quebec’s climate initiatives to support the decarbonization of private sector buildings and install another 95 public charging stations.

Managing Contamination

  • $38.5 million for mitigating asbestos and asbestos residues in mining facilities, advancing asbestos management technologies, and rehabilitating former mining sites; and
  • $22.4 million over three years to assist in the decontamination of municipal and private land which may have strong economic potential.

Clean Energy

  • Quebec will be announcing a new green hydrogen and bioenergy strategy soon which will be receiving $100 million over four years to invest in bioenergy and green hydrogen facilities for production and distribution.

Sustainability in Key Sectors

  • $29 million over the course of five years to the Sustainable Agriculture Plan with the purpose of rewarding sustainable agricultural practices in agri-businesses;
  • $5.2 million to coastal farmers to educate on the impacts of flood-prone areas or littoral zones;
  • $27.7 million for businesses, municipalities, and economic partners to reduce their impacts on both noise and air pollution; and
  • $1.6 million for the assistance of improving wastewater facilities in municipalities, as well as $13.2 million for the creation of internships and new training opportunities for youth in the wastewater management field.

Cost of Living in Quebec Budget 2022

The Quebec budget 2022 has allocated $3.2 billion via a one-time support to Quebec residents which will amount to ~$500/per adult (earning fewer than $100k per year) for approximately 6.4 million Quebecers. Furthermore, the province is making the following investments:

Affordable Housing

  • $247 million to accelerate the delivery of 3,500 units from an initiative called the AccèssLogis program;
  • $100 million to build about 1,000 affordable housing units under the Quebec Affordable Housing Program;
  • $42.9 million to build over 1,500 private rental units through the Rent Supplement Program;
  • $24.2 million to build approximately 500 shelters for those who are homeless, as well as 100 units for women who have become victim of domestic violence, through the Emergency Rent Supplement Program;
  • $165.2 million to a variety of initiatives that focus on affordable housing, including Société d’habitation du Québec programs;
  • $33 million to the  Rénovation Quebec Program which is open to applications from communities that are looking to develop renovation projects for local housing, specifically disadvantaged communities;
  • $62 million to the RenoRegion Program which is designed to help communities in low-income standing to repair major home defects;
  • $64 million to the Residential Adaptation Assistance Program for those who have a serious disability to adapt their homes to meet their needs; and
  • $6 million to the Shelter Enhancement Program which not-for-profit organizations may apply for. Funding is allotted for projects that operate housing for young people and women who have been displaced by domestic violence.

Health Care

The Quebec government has placed a focus on the improvement of health care facilities, services, and technologies as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The following investments are designed to improve health care services, increase capacities, and prevent future emergencies:

Modernizing the Health Care System

  • $128.5 millions to fund private long-term care homes for the improvement of facilities and support for residents;
  • $183.3 million to increase the access of front line medical services in the province;
  • $33.8 million to improve emergency departments and hospital facilities to improve the quality of services for emergency departments and increase intake capacities; and
  • $20.5 million to establish 15 clinics with the purpose of treating long-Covid symptoms.

Mental Health

  • $31.1 million to increase the number of mental health service professionals and to increase quality of service to those in need and reduce wait times; and
  • $20 million to improve the support for community mental health organizations such as not-for-profit organizations and charities.

Tax Incentives in Quebec Budget 2022

Quebec has laid out several tax incentive updates in their Quebec budget 2022 document which vary from measures on biofuel products to innovation credits. These measures present significant opportunities for Canadian businesses looking to leverage Quebec government support for growth. To see a list of tax highlights, visit Ryan’s Tax Alert | Quebec Budget 2022 for an easy-to-digest review.

Government Funding Opportunities for Quebec Businesses

This document has outlined the top government funding opportunities being made available to SMEs in Quebec during the 2022–23 term. However, there are many more government funding opportunities for Quebec businesses. To see a full list of programs, visit our Quebec Funding Directory for an easy-to-use list of programs.

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