the Regions: ThE sTRENgTh OF DIvERsITy
The many facets of Québec’s territory make it the most diversified economy in Canada:
its economic diversity index stands at 135 compared
with the Canadian average of 104.
Québec has 17 administrative regions, each one with its unique potential.
Many regions are positioned as a centre of specific skills in North America and the world.
Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean, Abitibi-Témiscamingue, Bas-Saint- Laurent, Montérégie and Estrie are good examples of Québec regional skills.
pRoVincial indices of industRial diVeRsity – 2002
Sources: Institut de la statistique du Québec and ministère du Développement économique, de l’Innovation et de l’Exportation.
Montérégie plays a key role in the agri-food sector. With a concentration of 150 teaching, research and technology transfer institutions and certain specialized industries, Saint-Hyacinthe is the location of an internationally recognized technocity.
Bas-Saint-Laurent has earned a reputation in marine biotechnology. Molecules taken from fish, shellfish and seaweed drawn from the cold waters of the St. Lawrence are used to make pharmaceutical, nutraceutical and cosmetic products. The region also boasts acknowledged maritime expertise.
In Rimouski, the Institut maritime du Québec recently developed a submarine evacuation simulator that has sparked considerable foreign interest.
The Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean region is a major player in aluminum processing, and in fact has been dubbed the Vallée de l’aluminium.
Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean alone produces 45% of Québec’s aluminum production and almost 5% of world production, i.e. 1 050 000 tonnes annually.
Known the world over for the abundance of its deposits of precious metals, copper and zinc, Abitibi-Témiscamingue is the core of Québec’s mining industry.
The region attracts 90% of investments in mining exploration and development.
Diamond exploration expenditures in Nord du Québec have quadrupled since 2001.
Québec is becoming a major player in the processing of this resource, in particular diamond cutting and polishing in Bas-Saint-Laurent.
Long associated with the transportation equipment manufacturing and assembly sector, Estrie diversified its economy with the appearance of Bombardier in Valcourt. The region is now a major centre of the plastics and rubber industry:
major producers of rubber components have facilities in Estrie, such as Waterville TG and Camoplast.
ECONOMIC AND FINANCIAL PROFILE OF QUÉBEC