Quebec immigration Ministry (MIFI) will automatically extend Quebec Acceptance Certificates (CAQ) given to foreign students if they were set to expire between April 30, 2020, and December 31, 2020.
The Ministry made the announcement on Thursday, April 30, and stated the decision was a response to the concerns of its many partner in the education sector during the present pandemic.
“This decision is intended to facilitate the steps that must be taken by international students who were in the verge of completing their study program but who must extend their stay in Quebec due to the present health state of emergency and the temporary interruption of their courses,” states the Ministry of Immigration, Francisation and Integration (MIFI) website.
Most foreign students who intend to study in Quebec have to obtain a Quebec Acceptance Certificates before they can apply to the Canadian federal immigration authorities for a Study Permit.
Quebec’s Immigration Ministry wants to avoid unfairly inflicting a penalty on foreign students who may not have been able to complete their program of study as scheduled in the winter or summer of 2020 because of the COVID-19 crisis. The automatic extension of CAQs will make it less difficult for these students to renew their study permit with the federal government because they will temporarily not be asked to have to go through a CAQ renewal process.
“These international students can therefore lodge an application to the federal government as soon as possible to have their study permits extended without having to add a new CAQ, which will allow them to maintain valid temporary residence status and to finish their study program when their courses resume,” says the federal government.
Foreign students will not be required to pay any fees for extending their Quebec Acceptance Certificates.
The measure announced today doesn’t apply to students who wish to acquire a CAQ for the fall semester or those who have a CAQ that will expires after December 31, 2020, said the ministry.
Quebec has close to about 90,000 foreign students. Its international student population has doubled since 2013.