Quebec plans to lower its immigration levels next year, including a deep decrease in the numbers accepted from Africa.
At the same time, minister Diane DeCourcy says the proposed Charter of Values is having no impact on the number of applicants, or the number of those choosing to come.
"That's true for all over the world. No more or less for Maghreb (Northwest Africa)," says DeCourcy, as she unveiled Quebec's immigration statistics and its plan for the upcoming year.
The province will have taken in 51, 700 to 54, 500 people in 2013 -- slightly more than it had planned.
But the PQ hopes to decrease those numbers by a small amount next year, to between 49, 500 to 52, 500.
Slightly fewer immigrants
DeCourcy says the system can't deal with the current levels. "It's certain that it (the higher number) caused a certain number of processing problems, and also it did not respect the wishes of the National Assembly."
The province plans to give out seven thousand fewer selection certificates, which authorize people to come to Quebec, to African candidates.
Also, slightly fewer people from Asia and the Americas will receive certificates, but the number given out to Europeans will go up by two thousand.
Under the plan, Africa will still bring in the highest proportion of immigrants, at 30 percent. While Europe's, at 20 percent, will be the lowest.
No impact from charter
The minister says she has seen no drop-off in the number of applications since the begriming of the charter debate, and people who have been selected to come here have not cancelled their trip.
Interestingly, Quebec has experienced a drastic drop in the number of people who had obtained selection certificates in 2013. The province had planned to give out at least 46, 200, but instead was only able to distribute 36, 800. That's 10, 000 fewer than the target.
Minister DeCourcy says this is due to conflicts in the Middle East and Africa that prevented missions to the areas. "It was dangerous to go."