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The Quebec migration doorway for skilled workers

The much-awaited Arrima Portal for submission of Expression of Interest (EoI) for Quebec migration through the Quebec Skilled Worker Program (QSWP) was opened for users on September 18. This marks a new era in the Quebec skilled worker immigration, as Quebec has scrapped its ‘first-come, first-served’ method of accepting applications for the Quebec Skilled Worker Program. The system has now been replaced with a more effective Expression of Interest system, which is demand-based. Arima portal replaces the Mon Projet Quebec online system that was fraught with controversy as the applicants had real tough time applying through the system.

Arrima is an online portal for Quebec Skilled Worker Program (QSWP) candidates to express their interest to apply for permanent residence in Canada. By introducing the Arrima portal, Quebec government aimed to reduce the processing time of PR applications and manage the applications better.

The name 'Arrima' is derived from the French word “arrimage” meaning harmonisation. The portal’s goal is to harmonize the QSWP applications. Those interested in immigrating to Quebec through QSWP must first create a profile in the Arrima portal. The eligible candidates will then enter a virtual pool from which the Government of Quebec will select candidates on a priority basis through periodic draws to invite to apply for Quebec Selection Certificate.

How does Arrima Portal work?

The users who start creating a profile in Arrima portal will first enter a virtual waiting room, where they will have to wait till being granted access to the portal. Once granted access, the users can start creating the profile in a 90-minute session. The profile has to be completed within 30 days. Once created, the profile will remain valid for one year. During this period, the candidates are allowed to update and revise their Arrima portal profile.

New Quebec Expression of Interest system:

The newly launched Quebec Expression of Interest system is somewhat similar to the federal Express Entry system. The system was introduced by the Government of Quebec on August 2, 2018, to manage the applications to the Quebec Skilled Worker Program. Anyone above the age of 18 can apply through the system. But in order to be eligible, the candidates must obtain minimum required scores for employability and selection factors in accordance with the QSWP points grid.

The eligible candidates who successfully create a profile in the Expression of Interest system will enter a pool of candidates. If the candidate has the required level of education and relevant area of training, he/she will receive a Quebec Selection Certificate. On receiving a Quebec Selection Certificate (Certificat de sélection du Québec, or CSQ), the candidate can submit the application within 90 days. Those who receive CSQ can apply for Canada permanent residence.