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Premier Legault Delivers Inaugural Speech, Less Than One Year before the Next Provincial Election

On October 19, 2021, Premier François Legault delivered an inaugural speech which detailed the priorities for the final year of his government’s mandate. Legault presented the following vision - “for Quebec to project itself in the future”. 

The next Quebec election will take place on or before October 3, 2022.

The Premier announced that the pandemic state of emergency will end once children aged five to 11 are vaccinated against COVID-19, which is expected to happen in early 2022. 

The following are just some of the priorities detailed in the speech that apply to the aftermarket industry and offer the industry opportunity: 

The province has an estimated 200,000 job vacancies unfilled. As part of the approach to curb the province’s labour shortage, Legault pledged to add 100,000 skilled workers and keep older people in the workplace. Keeping older people in the workforce could help the industry to mitigate its worker shortage. The skilled trades’ workforce is aging at a faster pace relative to the workforce with a university degree.  The retirement of older tradespeople and the resulting decline in the labour force participation rate are expected to exacerbate labour shortages in the automotive sector. 

Make the province a global hub for electric transport. To realize this vision, government may make funding available. There could be opportunity for shops, for example, to procure the technology that they need to service electric vehicles or funding for the manufacturing of “green” aftermarket replacement parts. 

Make the province more autonomous. Legault would like the province to become more autonomous, able to “manufacture, cultivate, construct, innovate and create.” Opportunities for innovation in the aftermarket abound. For example, as software becomes an increasingly critical vehicle element, a market is emerging for digital services and products. 

Enhance vocational training. To realize this, government may make funding available that – for example – could be used to better equip training facilities with the latest automotive technology. 

Expand the reach of high-speed Internet. Legault pledged that by the end of his government’s mandate even the most remote regions will have access to high-speed internet.  This will support businesses throughout Quebec to keep current at a time when online systems are becoming increasingly critical to the work and productivity of businesses throughout the aftermarket supply chain.