It is with great joy that this morning I unveiled the outline of the St. Lawrence Project, truly the largest economic recovery plan at the heart of the Coalition’s political agenda for the coming years.
Before several hundred supporters, members and artisans of the Coalition Avenir Québec at our party’s General Council, I expressed our clear resoluteness to refuse to accept the quiet decline of Québec and to start to move forward instead. The reaction was unanimously enthusiastic. I felt that a real eagerness and pride for a sustainable recovery in Quebec was stimulated among our members, MPs and supporters.
The St. Lawrence Project is first and foremost a vision of what Quebec could become in the 21st century: a prosperous and confident society, which offers an excellent quality of life, which exploits its natural resources in a sustainable manner and leads the way towards a knowledge economy.
I want everything to be possible again in Québec.
Our grandparents had the courage to clear farmland and raise large families without electricity. They carried Québec through the Quiet Revolution and had the resolve to envision and build the James Bay Project. Today’s youth has inherited the ambitions of their predecessors. But the situation has changed. Our ancestors fought for the control of a hostile territory, and they succeeded. Now, our young people want to conquer the world. It is now up to us to give them the means to match their great ambitions.
The St. Lawrence Project is ambitious. It is anchored in the St. Lawrence valley, the melting pot of our history, home of nearly 60% of Quebecers. Its thrust relies on a knowledge economy, rather than on a cyclical industry or a simple exploitation of our natural resources. It aims to promote the emergence of an innovation culture in Quebec, and generates important synergies between businesses, research centers and living environments. More importantly, the St. Lawrence Project is a real social project that integrates quality of life, environment, reclaiming land, fighting against school dropout, valorization of education and contemporary urbanism.
The Coalition now offers a broad and demanding vision for Quebec. The challenge is great, but I am confident that we can make it happen. We owe it to our children and grandchildren, and to those who built the Quebec we cherish today. Let all the pride of our ancestors emerge from the River and its valley. Let us win the confidence of all Quebecers and renew the drive of a Quebec moving forward.
Leader, Coalition Avenir Québec