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Here's Which Quebec Regions Quebecers Ditched & Moved To The Most Between 2020 And 2021

Spoiler: Montreal was the biggest loser.

Senior Editor
Here's Which Quebec Regions Quebecers Ditched & Moved To The Most Between 2020 And 2021

If you thought you counted more moving vans than usual recently, you're probably not imagining things. A total of 48,300 people left Montreal for other Quebec regions between July 2020 and July 2021. That represents 2.6% of the region's population — the biggest drop due to internal migration since officials first started organizing and publishing the data in the early 2000s, according to the Institut de la statistique du Québec (ISQ).

But the metropolis wasn't alone. A January 13 release from the ISQ notes a trend of Quebecers leaving regions with major urban centres. Net gains in interregional movers were smaller in the Capitale-Nationale and Montérégie regions (0.11% and 0.44%, respectively) than they had been in previous years.

Like Montreal, Laval and Outaouais tallied losses in internal migration. This was the first time Outaouais reported a loss, according to the ISQ.

It's perhaps important to underline that the release only covers population shifts within Quebec. It does not count the effects of migration from other Canadian provinces or from outside of Canada.

More rural and suburban regions, meanwhile, saw big net increases in what the statistical agency calls "migratory exchanges" with other Quebec regions.

The Laurentides region on the North Shore was the biggest winner, welcoming 12,700 people from elsewhere in the province between July 2020 and July 2021. That number represents 2% of its population.

Estrie had a record increase due to internal migration, too. Recall that the region gained two more regional county municipalities in 2021 when the government transferred Brome-Missisquoi and Haute-Yamaska to it from Montérégie.

The ISQ reported gains in the Bas-Saint-Laurent, Centre-du-Québec, Chaudière-Appalaches, Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine, Lanaudière, Mauricie and Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean regions, as well.

The outlying and northern Abitibi-Témiscamingue, Côte-Nord and Nord-du-Québec regions continued to lose people to other regions.

    Thomas MacDonald
    Senior Editor
    Thomas MacDonald is a Senior Editor for MTL Blog focused on Montreal public transit and is based in Montreal, Quebec.
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