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Regions

Québec is divided into 17 administrative regions :

01 Bas-Saint-Laurent
02 SaguenayLac-Saint-Jean
03 Capitale-Nationale
04 Mauricie
05 Estrie
06 Montréal
07 Outaouais
08 Abitibi-Témiscamingue
09 Côte-Nord
10 Nord-du-Québec
11 Gaspésie-Îles-de-la-Madeleine
12 Chaudière-Appalaches
13 Laval
14 Lanaudière
15 Laurentides
16 Montérégie
17 Centre-du-Québec
 


Ministère des Ressources naturelles, de la Faune et des Parcs
Copyright 2004

01 Bas-Saint-Laurent

Bordered by the fleuve Saint-Laurent (St. Lawrence River) to the north and Maine and New Brunswick to the south, the Bas-Saint-Laurent  region stretches 320 kilometres eastward from La Pocatière to Les Méchins. Approximately 99.2% of the 205,000 people who live in the region are French-speaking.

Agriculture, forestry and peat production are important industries in the area. The manufacturing sector, which employs close to 10,000 people, is dominated by lumber mills, pulp and paper plants, food and beverage production and transportation equipment manufacturing. The service sector accounts for 73% of all employment; jobs in this area are concentrated in the public and parapublic sectors, communications and new information technologies. The service sector also includes marine-related jobs in teaching, research and transportation.

The Bas-Saint-Laurent region enjoys swift, easy access to North American and European markets (highways, railways, waterways).

To find out more, check out the Bas-Saint-Laurent regional portal.

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02 Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean

The Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean region stretches from north of Lac Saint-Jean all the way to the fjord du Saguenay (Saguenay River fjord). Its 300,000 inhabitants are known for their hospitality and joie de vivre.

The region leads Québec in terms of volume of wood harvested and aluminum production. Its agri-food industry is in full expansion, thanks to dairy and grain production.

Tourism and culture are important levers for regional and local development. Services and infrastructure include a university, four colleges and major research centres. In short, the Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean region offers a unique environment where people can enjoy the advantages of city living while experiencing the joys of nature.

To find out more, check out the Saguenay–Lac-St-Jean regional portal

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03 Capitale-Nationale

The Capitale-Nationale (Québec) region is the demographic hub of eastern and central Québec. It is Québec’s tenth-largest and fourth-most-populated region.

The leading economic activity in the region is commerce, followed closely by healthcare, public administration and manufacturing. Education, the hotel and catering industry, and professional, scientific, technical and financial services complete the picture.

The region is served by a well-developed transportation system, transcontinental railways, a major port and an international airport with direct flights to large urban and industrial centres in North America.

Designated by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, Québec is the seat of the gouvernement du Québec.

To find out more, check out the Capitale-Nationale regional portal.

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04 Mauricie

The Mauricie region is located in the heart of Québec, halfway between Montréal and Québec City. Its huge territory is bordered by the fleuve Saint-Laurent (St. Lawrence River) to the south and the Nord-du-Québec region to the north. It is home to almost 260,000 people — about 3.5% of the population of Québec.

Economic development in the region is driven by abundant forest and water resources and fertile farmland. Mauricie’s leading industries are pulp and paper, lumber, chemicals, metallurgy and agriculture.

Thanks to its immense forests and numerous lakes and rivers — including the 587-kilometre-long the rivière Saint-Maurice (St. Maurice River) and Lac Saint-Pierre, singled out by UNESCO as a World Biosphere Reserve — Mauricie is a prime destination for nature lovers and outdoors sports enthusiasts. Founded in 1634, the region’s leading urban centre, Trois-Rivières, is the second-oldest city in North America.

To find out more, check out the Mauricie regional portal.

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05 Estrie

Estrie is bordered to the south by the United States, to the north by Centre-du-Québec, to the west by Montérégie and to the east by Chaudière-Appalaches. Located midway between Québec and the Montérégie administrative region, it covers 10,127 square kilometres, i.e., scarcely 0.75% of the total territory of Québec.

Estrie is part of the Appalaches (Appalachians). Thanks to its hills and rivers, it boasts a major recreational and tourism industry. The region’s diversified economic structure generates jobs in a wide variety of areas. Estrie is Québec’s number-two region in terms of exports.

People in Estrie can be proud of the region’s network of French- and English-language educational institutions at all levels, from elementary schools to universities.

To find out more, check out the Estrie regional portal.

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06 Montréal

The île de Montréal (Montréal Island) is home to 1.8-million people, or a quarter of the population of Québec.

Besides being an important scientific, intellectual and cultural centre, Montréal boasts major manufacturing and service sectors, which employ over 900,000 people. The region has made a successful shift to a knowledge-based economy focusing on telecommunications, aerospace, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals and information technology.

A cosmopolitan city known for its festivals, Montréal is a prime destination for convention-goers and tourists. A growing number of international organizations are based in Montréal.

To find out more, check out the Montréal regional portal.

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07 Outaouais

Outaouais is a vast region spread over 33,060 square kilometres. Located in southwestern Québec, it is bordered by Abitibi-Témiscamingue to the northwest, the Laurentides (Laurentian mountains) to the east and Ontario to the southwest. The rivière des Outaouais (Ottawa River) is the natural boundary between Québec and Ontario.

The main urban centre in the Outaouais region is the new city of Gatineau, created in January 2002 by the amalgamation of the former cities of Aylmer, Buckingham, Gatineau, Hull and Masson-Angers. The rest of the region is divided into four regional county municipalities: Collines-de-l’Outaouais, Papineau, Pontiac and Vallée-de-la-Gatineau. The region’s proximity to Ottawa — just across the river from Gatineau — means that it is home to a large number of federal civil servants.

Outaouais is the region of Québec with the highest percentage of service-sector workers, who generate 83% of regional GDP. It is number-one in terms of proportion of high-tech exporters.

To find out more, check out the Outaouais regional portal.

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08 Abitibi-Témiscamingue

Abitibi-Témiscamingue is a far-flung region located in northwestern Québec. It is blessed with abundant natural resources, which are the cornerstone of its economy.

Nestled in the boreal forest, criss-crossed by rivers and lakes, the region hosts activities such as ecotourism, snowmobiling, hunting and fishing. Distinctive outfitter camps for hunters and fishers provide enchanting settings for recreation and relaxation.

Abitibi-Témiscamingue also boasts a vibrant cultural scene. Colourful festivals, including the Festival du cinéma international de l’Abitibi-Témiscamingue, the Festival de l’humour, the Festival de musique émergente and the Foire gourmande, have taken root in this dynamic region. Two percent of Quebecers live in Abitibi-Témiscamingue.

 To find out more, check out the Abitibi-Témiscamingue regional portal.

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09 Côte-Nord

The Côte-Nord region stretches eastward along the north shore of the fleuve Saint-Laurent (St. Lawrence River), from the Saguenay (Saguenay River) to the détroit de Belle Isle (Strait of Belle Isle) — a distance of 1,280 kilometres. The region also includes part of the golfe du Saint-Laurent (Gulf of St. Lawrence), the île d'Anticosti (Anticosti Island) and a huge territory extending northward from the fleuve Saint-Laurent (St. Lawrence River). Côte-Nord shares a border with Labrador. Brimming with natural resources, this sparsely populated region (0.3 inhabitants per square kilometre) is home to three main ethnic communities.

The population, 86% francophone, is concentrated in the cities of Sept-Îles (25,500 inhabitants) and Baie-Comeau (24,500 inhabitants). English-speakers are scattered across the immense Basse-Côte-Nord (lower north shore) area. Natives make up close to 10% of the population; most of them live on the region’s nine reserves.

With just 1.5% of the population of Québec, the Côte-Nord region accounts for 31% of Québec’s aluminum production, 28% of mineral shipments, 22% of fish products and 15% of forest products. Hunting, fishing and trapping are part of the region’s traditional economic base.

To find out more, check out the Côte-Nord regional portal.

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10 Nord-du-Québec

The Nord-du-Québec region covers 55% of Québec’s total landmass, or almost 840,000 square kilometres. It is home to Inuit, Crees and Jamesiens — a unique population mix and a source of exceptional cultural and socio-political diversity.

Québec’s northernmost region abounds in natural resources, which have yet to be thoroughly explored. Mining is the main industry and forestry plays a major role in the economy. Hydro-Québec produces 50% of its electricity in Nord-du-Québec. The region’s incomparable, untamed landscape is a magnet for nature lovers.

To find out more, check out the Nord-du-Québec regional portal.

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11 Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine

Made up of two distinct subregions, Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine extends into the golfe du Saint-Laurent (Gulf of St. Lawrence). It has a total coastline of over 1,000 kilometres.

The region’s unique culture and natural attractions make it an increasingly popular tourist destination. Home to a population of about 100,000 Quebecers of European and aboriginal descent, the region offers a fascinating mixture of traditions and cultures.

Until recently, Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine was known primarily for its natural resources (lumber, fish, minerals). To stimulate growth, people in the region are branching out into promising new industries such as wind energy, information and telecommunication technologies and marine biotechnology. Increasingly, the focus is on value-added products.

To find out more, check out the Gaspésie–Îles-de-la-Madeleine regional portal.

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12 Chaudière-Appalaches

The Chaudière-Appalaches region is bordered by the fleuve Saint-Laurent (St. Lawrence River) to the north, the United States to the south, Estrie and Centre-du Québec to the west and Bas-Saint-Laurent to the east.

Agriculture and forestry are the mainstays of the regional economy, along with small and medium-sized businesses. The region is known for its production of lumber, furniture, textiles, clothing, metal products, plastics, machinery and transportation equipment.

Chaudière-Appalaches has enjoyed one of the lowest unemployment rates in Québec for the past few years.

 To find out more, check out the Chaudière-Appalaches regional portal.

 

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13 Laval

Surrounded by Rivière des Milles-Îles, Rivière des Prairies and Lac des Deux-Montagnes, Laval is located on Île Jésus. It is both a city and an administration region. It covers an area of 245 square kilometres and has a population of over 350,000.

Laval is strategically close to downtown Montréal and the Laurentides (Laurentian mountains).

Over the years, Laval has grown into a major regional economic centre. It hosts numerous businesses and boasts a balanced, diversified industrial base. The regional economy employs close to 110,000 people.

Laval also has a bustling tourist industry supported by all essential infrastructure

To find out more, check out the Laval regional portal.

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14 Lanaudière

Lanaudière is one of the central regions of Québec. It is located between the fleuve Saint-Laurent (St. Lawrence River), the Laurentides (Laurentian mountains) and Mauricie. It offers a unique blend of culture, nature and outdoor activities. Lanaudière covers an area of 13,543 square kilometres northwest of the Saint-Laurent (St. Lawrence) (60-kilometre shoreline). The region is mainly rural, with urban areas in the south.

There are three distinct geographic areas in Lanaudière. The southern plain, with its rich agricultural heritage, is dotted with towns and villages. The Piedmont area, in the middle of Lanaudière, boasts a number of lakes and natural attractions popular with vacationers. In the northern part of the region, the forests of the plateau laurentien (Laurentian plateau) are great for fishing and other outdoor activities.

To find out more, check out the Lanaudière regional portal.

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15 Laurentides

Located northwest of Montréal, the Laurentides region is bordered by Rivière des Mille-Îles to the south and the boreal forest to the north. The regional topography is varied, comprising part of the plaine du Saint-Laurent (St. Lawrence plain) and the southern tip of the mountainous, lake-dotted Bouclier canadien (Canadian shield).

The regional tourism industry is highly developed. Mont-Tremblant, for example, has become one of the leading tourist destinations in North America. It has been targeted for an additional $1 billion in investments over the coming decade.

Known for its medium- and high-tech jobs, the Laurentides region boasts a balanced economy, including a major transportation sector, dynamic farms and a vigorous forestry industry.

Regional development is driven by factors such as demographic growth, substantial investments and quality of life.

To find out more, check out the Laurentides regional portal.

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16 Montérégie

Located next to Montréal, Montérégie stretches south to the United States border. It is Québec’s second-most-populated region and has a vigorous, diversified economy. Agriculture is the leading economic activity. Indeed, Montérégie is home to close to a quarter of Québec farms and agricultural jobs. There is also an important manufacturing sector, including agri-food businesses, primary metallurgy, metal fabrication, chemicals and textiles. The region is recognized as a major player in the field of biotechnology. Montérégie has an extensive highway system connecting it to large industrial centres in eastern North America.

To find out more, check out the Montérégie regional portal.

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17 Centre-du-Québec

The Centre-du-Québec region was officially created on July 30, 1997. It covers part of the former Mauricie–Bois-Francs region. Centre-du-Québec is located south of the fleuve Saint-Laurent (St. Lawrence River), halfway between Montréal and Québec. It comprises 84 municipalities and two aboriginal communities, and is broken down into five regional county municipalities: Arthabaska, Bécancour, Drummond, Nicolet-Yamaska and L’Érable. The main urban centres are Victoriaville, Bécancour, Drummondville, Nicolet and Plessisville. In 2001 there were approximately 218,500 residents in the region, or about 3% of the population of Québec. The regional economy is dependent mainly on agriculture and manufacturing. Centre-du-Québec is a pioneer in waste-product recycling and community development.

To find out more, check out the Centre-du-Québec regional portal.

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