Amid Curfews and Closures, Vaccines Offer a Path to Recovery: Quebec’s Two-Year Outlook

The Conference Board of Canada, 15 pages, March 18, 2021
Issue Briefing
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This quarterly economic forecast for the province of Quebec examines the economic outlook for the province, including gross domestic product (GDP), output by industry and labour market conditions.

This document contains both the French and the English versions of the articles.

Document Highlights

  • The economic recovery in Quebec slowed significantly following a resurgence in COVID-19 cases and the reinstatement of economic restrictions. Nevertheless, the distribution of vaccines and falling case numbers will permit a gradual reopening over the coming months, allowing growth to pick up starting in the second quarter.
  • After contracting by 5.2 per cent in 2020, and despite a slow start to this year, the economy is forecast to grow by 4.5 per cent in 2021.
  • Performance across industries has diverged significantly. Those able to adapt, often by harnessing technology, have done so. But others are unlikely to see much progress until later in the year once restrictions have eased.
  • Households have accumulated a large volume of savings, international and domestic travel remains difficult, and restrictions have fed pent-up demand among consumers. Together, these factors raise the potential for a strong rebound in spending once consumer confidence returns.
  • The labour market recovery slowed during the autumn and suffered a major setback with the closure of the retail sector in January. Significant future employment gains are expected to coincide with the full reopening of the service sector.
  • The trade outlook for Quebec is mixed. While the promise of future growth in the United States and China brightens the outlook for some of Quebec’s main goods exporters, until the travel markets recover, trade in services will remain subdued.

Table of Contents

Key findings

Quebec snapshot


Industrial outlook

Labour, consumption and income outlook





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