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ARCHIVED - RPP 2007-2008
Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec

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1 Overview

1.1 Message from the Minister

Jean-Pierre BlackburnPublication of the Report on Plans and Priorities is an opportunity, once a year, to make a more formal presentation of our commitments on economic development.

This year, the exercise is particularly meaningful for me since it arises one year after my appointment as head of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec. I was thus able to draw on my recent experience to take part in the deliberations leading to the general policy and more strategic directions contained in this report.

Globalization has become an inescapable economic phenomenon. It is one of the major changes to have arisen over the past 50 years, during which time the federal government provided the regions with its first development tools. An intensification of borderless competition may be observed in all regions of Quebec, particularly in our single-industry communities that are more prone to economic shocks.

I was able to see these effects first-hand on my different tours of the regions of Quebec. In particular, the economic structure based on the harvesting of natural resources in our province is becoming more fragile. Such industries as textiles, forestry and fisheries, previously the engines of our regions, are going through hard times.

Many of our more traditional enterprises and industries are now called upon to review or enhance how they do things. Also, the Agency pays quite special attention to the regions of Quebec that are experiencing difficulties, whose economy is based either on the harvesting of natural resources or on a single sector of activity and is slow adjusting to the new realities of world trade.

On my visits to the regions, I met men and women in the field, front-line stakeholders. One observation shared by many is that Quebecers rely on the Agency to support, coordinate and put forward economic development initiatives, particularly where economic growth is slow and employment inadequate.

At an economic juncture marked by the appearance of emerging economies, such as India and China, and the appreciation of the Canadian dollar, productivity and innovation appear more than ever to be crucial components of communities' prosperity and vitality and, consequently, of Canadians' quality of life.

In the context of this new economy, we have identified two key focuses around which we wish to direct Agency action in 2007-2008: regions posting slow economic growth, and small- and medium-sized enterprises.

Through its action, the Agency is setting itself the dual strategic goal of contributing to the dynamism and revitalization of Quebec communities and reinforcing the competitiveness of SMEs and regions. In this sense, our approach is in line with the initiatives I have announced over the past year, which have already borne fruit. I am convinced that we are on the path to success.

In the field, Agency activities will cover the whole of Quebec, that is, outlying and central areas, major urban centres, Metropolitan Montréal, and the most vulnerable communities within those four types of areas.

The dynamism and vitality of Quebec communities depend on numerous socio-economic factors. The Agency intends to promote an approach based on the creation of collective capital, development of entrepreneurship in the regions and enhancement in a given geographical area of value-added attractions.

With respect to competitiveness of SMEs and regions, the Agency wishes in particular to support an increase in enterprises' strategic skills with respect to management and innovation, participate in development and consolidation of new regional poles and promote outside Canada the knowhow and competitiveness specific to our regions.

This integrated approach ties in with a broad context and takes into account the economic, social, cultural and environmental dimensions. In its approach, the Agency is also building on joint action, consultation and participation by various development stakeholders from the public sector and civil society. In conjunction with its partners and drawing on the expertise and experience of its personnel, in particular from its 14 business offices across Quebec, the Agency will contribute to the diversification of communities and the growth of enterprises and regions.

I view this new year with a great deal of enthusiasm and confidence. I invite you to read this 2007 2008 Report on Plans and Priorities, in which you will find the commitments that have been reached to make Quebec's regions prosperous, dynamic places.

Jean-Pierre Blackburn - Signature
Jean-Pierre Blackburn
Minister of Labour and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec

1.2 Management representation statement

I submit, for tabling in Parliament, the 2007-2008 Report on Plans and Priorities (RPP) of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec.

This document has been prepared based on the reporting principles contained in the Guide for the Preparation of Part III of the 2007-2008 Estimates: Reports on Plans and Priorities and Departmental Performance Reports:

  • It adheres to the specific reporting requirements contained in the TBS guidance.
  • It is based on the Agency's Strategic Outcomes and Program Activity Architecture that were approved by the Treasury Board.
  • It presents consistent, comprehensive, balanced and reliable information.
  • It provides a basis of accountability for the results achieved with the resources and authorities entrusted to it.
  • It reports finances based on approved planned spending numbers from the Treasury Board Secretariat.

Michelle d'Auray - Signature
Michelle d'Auray

Date: ________February 27, 2007_________

1.3 Summary


Under its Act, which came into effect on October 5, 2005, the object of the Agency is to promote the long-term economic development of the regions of Quebec by giving special attention to those where slow economic growth is prevalent or opportunities for productive employment are inadequate. In carrying out its object, the Agency shall take such measures as will promote cooperation and complementarity with Quebec and communities in Quebec.


In the long term, Quebec's regions and communities will have increased their development capabilities, dynamism and prosperity in a significant, lasting manner for the benefit of their residents.

Three long-term strategic outcomes

Vitality of communities

Revitalize communities so they enjoy better socio-economic prospects and maintain and develop the economic activity base.

Competitiveness of SMEs and regions

Reinforce conditions conducive to sustainable growth and the competitive positioning of SMEs and the regions through the development of SMEs' capabilities, networks, innovation and knowledge.

Policy, representation and cooperation

Foster the development and implementation of policies, programs and initiatives which reflect national priorities and the realities of Quebec's regions, reinforcement of the consistency and added value of federal action with respect to regional development, and cooperation with the Government of Quebec and other development agents.

To contribute to the Government of Canada's results

By fostering strong economic growth.

Through an integrated regional development approach

Global: take economic, social, cultural and environmental dimensions into account in the design of policies, programs and initiatives.

Territorial: establish strategies geared to the type of area defined in terms of similar socio-economic issues.

Horizontal: build on cooperation and collaboration with federal partners, the Government of Quebec and Quebec communities.

Participatory: elicit participation by the economic agents concerned.

By eliciting and supporting development through

  • information and promotional activities concerning Agency programs and services
  • guidance, development and consulting activities
  • financial assistance activities
  • activities associated with the generation and enhancement of knowledge.

In relation to several beneficiaries

  • enterprises (particularly SMEs)
  • non-profit organizations (NPOs)
  • communities

by building on its 14 business offices, as well as advisory committees and a network of development organizations across Quebec, including:

  • local development agencies supporting communities
  • regional or sectoral organizations offering general and specialized services to enterprises, in particular in exports and innovation
  • knowledge institutions (research centres, college technology transfer centres and universities).

Agency resources





Financial resources
($ thousands)




Human resources
(full-time equivalent [FTE])




1.4 Agency priorities

Planned spending1
($ thousands)





Program priorities2

Priority #1:
Intensify the economic diversification of regions and communities posting slow economic growth

Type Already established




Priority #2:
Reinforce the performance of innovative, competitive SMEs in key sectors

Type Already established




Management priorities

Priority #3:
Implement the Agency's new programs

Priority #4:
Reinforce the Agency's results-based management capability and initiate integrated planning

1 Planned contributions and grants expenditures.
2 For further information on priorities, plans and planned results, see section 2.

1.5 Agency areas of intervention


Planned spending1 and human resources2
(in $ thousands and FTEs)





Contributes to priority

Strategic outcome (SO) #1:
Vitality of communities




Priority #1

Program activities3 (PA):




Development of communities





188 FTEs

188 FTEs

185 FTEs




21 FTEs

21 FTEs

17 FTEs

Special intervention measures





10 FTEs

6 FTEs

6 FTEs


218 FTEs

215 FTEs

208 FTEs


Strategic outcome #2:
Competitiveness of SMEs and regions




Priority #2

Program activities:




Competitiveness of enterprises (SMEs)





82 FTEs

83 FTEs

83 FTEs

Competitive positioning of regions





56 FTEs

56 FTEs

56 FTEs


138 FTEs

139 FTEs

139 FTEs


Strategic outcome #3:
Policy, representation and cooperation





Program activity:




Priority #3

Policies, programs and initiatives





53 FTEs

53 FTEs

53 FTEs


53 FTEs

53 FTEs

53 FTEs



409 FTEs

407 FTEs

400 FTEs


1 Planned contributions and grants expenditures.
2 The variation in FTEs is explained in section 3 under each program activity.
3 For further information on program activities, resources and planned outcomes, see section 3.


Competitiveness of SMEs and regions
Ability to gain a competitive advantage over their local, regional, national and international competitors.

Strategic capabilities
Combination and coordination of resources, skills and knowledge which enable an enterprise to undertake actions or activities that will have an important effect on its growth and long-term development.

Collective capital
Productive relationships between the members of networks and their institutions, resulting in socio-economic spinoff.