“Vaccination is the key to win against the pandemic”


 23 February 2021

Quebec’s Prime Minister, François Legault, and the Minister of Health and Social Services, Christian Dubé, announced today, live from Quebec’s most important vaccination centre, that the vaccination campaign targetting the general public will start next week. The campaign will be launched according to age groups.

The vaccination campaign will take place step by step, starting with the people who are 85 years old and older (born in 1936 or before), who can make an appointment as of february 25th.

The simplest way to get an appointment is by going to the page http://www.quebec.ca/vaccinCOVID. For those who don’t have an internet connexion or struggle using it, it is possible to call the following number to get help: 1-877-644-4545.

It is important to remember that those who are not in the 85+ age group must avoid calling or taking an appointment. Every age group will be informed when it is time for them to get an appointment. The first step only targets people who are 85 years old and older.

“We will start with the people who are 85 years old and older located in the Montreal region, since it is the region where the virus is the most present. Then, we will proceed with the other regions. However, people who are 85 years old and older can still make an appointment as of february 25th, even if they are not from Montreal.”

A New Future for Quebec’s Aerospace Industry


 18 February 2021

The Government of Quebec confirms the signature, with Telesat LEO Inc. (Telesat) and MacDonald Dettwiler and Associates Corporation (MDA Montreal) of two agreements in principle representing an estimated $1.8 billion in investments in Quebec. These agreements relate to their project in Quebec for the future Telesat Lightspeed network. This project consists of deploying, in low earth orbit, a constellation of 298 new-generation satellites integrated into a state-of-the-art terrestrial network.

Québec Premier François Legault made the announcement today in the company of Pierre Fitzgibbon, Minister of Economy and Innovation.

As part of Telesat’s project, MDA Montreal was selected to develop and manufacture the active antennas, a key technology for these satellites. The Lightspeed project will allow MDA Montreal to create up to 280 direct, well-paying jobs in Montreal. MDA is also in advanced discussions with Thales Alenia Space for the final assembly and manufacturing of the Lightspeed satellites in Quebec. Telesat’s plans include the establishment of its network operations center in Quebec, which will create at least 320 direct, well-paying jobs in Gatineau. These satellites are designed to offer a global telecommunications service with high bandwidth and low latency, whose performance would be comparable to that of a fibre optic network.

The agreements in principle announced today represent the first step in this important development project for Québec, the details of which will be announced in the coming months. The Quebec government’s financial support of $400 million for Telesat and $50 million for MDA, in the form of a repayable advance with a forgivable portion of $50 million, is conditional on the finalization of the agreement between Telesat LEO and the federal government.

Highlights :

– The approximately 600 jobs that will be created at Telesat and MDA will pay close to $100,000/year.

– Telesat is one of the world’s leading communications satellite operators, with 15 geostationary satellites in operation.

– Headquartered in Ottawa, the company has facilities and offices across the country and around the world.

– MDA Montréal specializes in the design, development and manufacture of payloads and products such as space antennas and high-performance electronic systems for the space industry.

– The company employs close to 640 people in Quebec and is considered the main prime contractor in the Quebec space sector.

“We must continue to be extremely careful”


 9 February 2021

Premier François Legault confirmed today that the number of new daily cases continues to decline in Quebec. The average number of new cases per day is currently just over 1,000, which means that the measures implemented continue to slow the spread of the virus. However, the number of hospitalizations (940) is still far too high. The Prime Minister reminded everyone that despite the easing of restrictions and the gradual reopening of businesses and campuses, discipline is still needed in the application of the instructions given by public health authorities.

“The situation continues to improve. The number of cases, hospitalizations and deaths are decreasing, but we must continue to be very cautious. I know that many Quebecers are very fed up. I know that many are looking forward to seeing their friends, to having dinner together. But we have no choice, we must continue to make sacrifices,” said François Legault, adding that there is still far too much pressure on hospital caregivers.

Mr. Legault also urged everyone with even the slightest symptom to get tested. The system’s testing capacity has increased significantly, making the process faster and more accessible. “I’m told people wait two days before they go for testing. You have to go as soon as you have symptoms. We’ve greatly increased our testing capacity. It doesn’t take long, and we get the results, on average, in less than 24 hours,” he said.

Too early to make an assessment

As Quebec has surpassed the 10,000 mark in recent days following VIDOC-19, Mr. Legault once again offered his condolences to all the families of the victims. He recalled that a national commemoration of the victims will be held on March 11th.

“We know that Quebec was very affected, especially in the first wave. We are doing better in the second wave. In total, proportionally speaking, among the G7 countries, Quebec has had more deaths than the rest of Canada and Germany, but fewer than the United States, France, the United Kingdom, Italy and Spain. That said, we will have to learn from this crisis collectively,” said the Prime Minister.

“Our efforts have paid off. Curfews and other measures have reduced the number of cases. I thank the public for following the guidelines during the past month, which has been very trying. We are moving in the right direction. However, we must continue to be extremely careful. We can go out for a walk, go to school, go to work or do our shopping. But if not, we stay home. This is the best way to help our nurses and all the hospital staff. »

François Legault, Premier of Quebec

Related link :

For more information on COVID-19: Québec.ca/coronavirus.

Adjustments to health measures in Quebec’s higher education institutions


 5 February 2021

Concerned by the psychological health and isolation issues experienced by the student population, the Minister of Higher Education, Ms. Danielle McCann, together with the strategic medical advisor at the Direction générale de la santé publique du Québec, Dr. Richard Massé, announced a series of adjustments to the health measures in effect in Québec’s higher education institutions.

These changes are intended to allow students to return to campuses and resume a certain amount of student and social life in a safe manner.

Returning Students to Campus

In the red zone, starting February 8, every student, regardless of his or her program of study, will be able, if he or she is able to, and gradually, to benefit from teaching activities or group activities of a pedagogical nature in the presence of others several times a month, ideally once a week. Colleges and universities will therefore be authorized to offer face-to-face teaching activities to students, while maintaining distance. However, the maximum classroom occupancy rate will be set at 50% for academic courses, while there will be no occupancy limit for practical teaching activities (e.g., laboratories) and assessments.

The changes will also allow groups of up to six students to come together on campus to carry out pedagogical activities complementary to teaching activities, such as team work or study groups.

Student services can be offered both in person and at a distance. Individual or collaborative work spaces in the library or in designated classrooms will be set up to provide academic and psychosocial support services on campus.

In buildings and premises occupied by educational institutions in the red or orange zone, the wearing of a procedure mask will become mandatory at all times, with some exceptions, for all students. In addition, a distance of 1.5 meters between students sitting in class and 2 meters in all other situations will also continue to be strictly enforced, for example in small working groups.

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Quebec goes ahead with major 200 MW Apuiat wind project


 5 February 2021

The Prime Minister, Mr. François Legault, the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, Mr. Jonathan Julien, the Minister Responsible for Indigenous Affairs, Mr. Ian Lafrenière, the leader of the Uashat mak Maniuetam innu community, Mr. Mike Mckenzie, the leader of the Essipit Innu Council, Mr. Martin Dufour, the CEO of Hydro-Quéebec, Mrs Sophie Brochu and the President and chief Executive Officer of Boralex In., Mr. Patrick Decostre, are happy to announce an historic partnership enabling the realization of the Apuiat wind project.

The project is in line with the governement’s vision for Quebec’s economic recovery while relying on renewable energy. The project aims to ultimately reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In this context, an incerasing electricity demand is to be forseen due to the launch of the Plan for a Green Economy and some electricity export projects. This partnership will allow a 17% price reduction on electricity compared to 2018.

The deal includes a 30 years contract to buy electricity produced in the Apuiat wind turbine parc. The contract between Hydro-Québec Production and Parc éolien Apuiat S.E.C., which regroups Boralex and the innu communities, announces that electricity will be bought at 6¢/kWh. Apuiat therefore becomes the wind turbine parc with the most competitive prices in the province.

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