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Press release
March 27, 2019

Quebec’s Place in the World; The CAQ is Applying the Brakes


The MNA representing Bourassa-Sauvé and Official Opposition Critic for International Relations and La Francophonie, Ms. Paule Robitaille, called out the Minister of International Relations and La Francophonie, Ms. Nadine Girault, on her government’s lack of leadership in matters pertaining to international relations and la Francophonie.

Ms. Robitaille questioned the Minister not having overtly taken a stance following the tabling of Bill 9, the first measure of which seeks to cancel 18,000 active immigration files, impacting close to 50,000 people. The province’s international reputation and attractiveness have already been tarnished and it will be more difficult to attract the best talents to Quebec. The minister has avoided answering the MNA for Bourassa-Sauvé’s questions. Recall that Minister Girault refused to support a motion presented at the National Assembly which sought to have the government respect the Premier’s promise to process the 18,000 active files according to the former regulations.

In terms of La Francophonie, the CAQ government’s lack of ambition and interest is conspicuous. When it came to the Jeux de la Francophonie, the minister has firmly remained camped in her position; she will not invest more than 17 million dollars, an insufficient sum for successfully bringing the project to fruition. They just don’t seem to be interested. Are we to conclude that the Coalition Avenir Québec no longer supports the City of Sherbrooke’s project?

The government has promised a huge boost at the international level, but the ministry’s budget credits have not increased and the minister doesn’t seem to have undertaken the necessary steps. The minister’s words seem to have more to do with rhetoric than concrete action. The sharp economic shift and lack of ambition on all of Quebec’s other international fronts make us concerned that the Ministry of International Relations and La Francophonie will be placed under the trusteeship of the Ministry of Economy and Innovation.

Since her arrival at the Ministry of International Relations and La Francophonie, Minister Nadine Girault has struggled to find her place within the CAQ government. The decrease to her ministry’s budget when her government is swimming in surpluses is a sad example of that. How can Minister Girault defend Quebec on the international stage following the tabling of the immigration bill? How do you ensure Quebec’s global leadership when she is struggling merely to support Sherbrooke’s application to host the Jeux de la Francophonie? Will the Ministry of International Relations and La Francophonie simply become a branch of the Ministry of Economy and Innovation?

– Paule Robitaille, MNA representing Bourassa-Sauvé and Official Opposition Critic for International Relations and La Francophonie