With the arrival of high-tech appliances, artificial intelligence and Industry 4.0, Québec is once again taking a leadership role in transforming its manufacturing sector. Dominique Anglade, Minister of Economy, Science and Innovation, tells us how she plans to transform factories and create highly skilled jobs.

Tell us about Quebec’s plan to support the advanced manufacturing sector and reinforce international partnerships.

At 14 percent of our GDP1, we are determined to bring manufacturing back to the forefront. We are launching a vast project to invigorate innovative manufacturing across all regions and industries. From 2012 to 2015, we invested an average of 66 million per year. This year, we have invested 400 million dollars in innovative manufacturing, for a total of 1.9 billion, including investments in the private sector.

How is skills development crucial to the province’s economic development?

Because talent is an essential component of our development, we have massively invested in research and innovation. One of our major challenges is demography, so immigration will be essential to keep up with the demand. We want to make sure that every region has a share in this essential transformation.

Which are the practical applications and advantages of Industry 4.0?

We will be more competitive to penetrate new markets and reach our full economic potential on the international scene. Contrary to popular belief, we can create even more jobs with high-tech appliances: I haven’t made a single announcement this year involving job losses due to technology. Things are going very well in Québec, but we can’t become complacent. I would say we are just getting started.