The government’s goal is for Québec to become a leader in the production, transformation and recycling of critical and strategic minerals (CSMs) in partnership with local and Indigenous communities.
The Québec Plan for the Development of Critical and Strategic Minerals 2020-2025 (QPDCSM) outlines the actions planned to achieve this goal. They are guided by four orientations:
- Orientation 1: Increase knowledge and expertise on strategic and critical minerals
- Orientation 2: Deploy or optimize integrated sectors in partnership with the CSM producing regions
- Orientation 3: Contribute to the transition to a sustainable economy
- Orientation 4: Raise awareness, guide and promote
Québec Plan for the Development of Critical and Strategic Minerals 2020-2025 (PDF 7.65 Mb)
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QPDCSM summary sheet (PDF 3.85 Mb)
Read the summary.
The development of critical and strategic minerals will enable Québec to continue its energy and technological transition and create quality jobs in the regions while contributing to developing a greener economy.
Companies wishing to invest in Québec’s mining sector can find additional information on the page Invest in Québec’s mining sector .
A new action plan for the 2023-2025 period
The first three years of implementation of the QPDCSM enabled the government and its partners to identify structuring actions for the development of critical and strategic mineral sectors. Furthermore, it made it possible to ensure that they evolved to the benefit of Québec society. The global geopolitical context, as well as technological advances, have also evolved considerably since 2020, which has an impact on the development of the sectors.
For the final phase of the QPDCSM (2023-2025), the government is proposing an update on actions that will, first and foremost, support the development of critical and strategic mineral projects and address the environmental challenges they may represent.
QPDCSM's summary 2023-2025 (PDF 1.23 Mb) (in French)
Read to know more.
Critical and strategic minerals announced in 2020:
- Graphite (natural)
- Platinum group elements
- Rare earth elements
The 6 new critical and strategic minerals announced in January 2024:
- High-purity iron*
- High-purity silica**
* To be considered in the list of Québec critical and strategic minerals as high-purity iron, the produced iron concentrate must contain at least 67% iron and be low in impurities.
** To be considered in the list of Québec critical and strategic minerals as high-purity silica (metal silica, chemical silica), silica must achieve a purity of at least 99% (2N) and be low in impurities.
The circular economy: creating wealth differently
The circular economy is at the heart of the Plan. Recovery and recycling of critical and strategic minerals will be encouraged. The goal is to reuse or recycle tailings or asset components by giving them a second life.
The following are examples of projects or studies related to the recycling of critical and strategic minerals that have received financial support from the Gouvernement du Québec:
- The Lithion project (in French), which is developing a recycling technology for lithium-ion batteries.
- The rare earth from magnets recycling (in French) project.
- The study on an end-of-life lithium-ion battery management framework.
- The project of asbestos-bonded mine tailings reclamation (in French) to produce magnesium oxide.
- The project to construct facilities (in French) to implement a new thermal oxidation technology to increase tellurium recovery in tailings.
- The four projects (in French) funded by the Circular Economy Support Program for Critical and Strategic Minerals.
Since the launch of the QPDCSM in the fall of 2020, a number of investments and actions related to the measures it proposes have been made, thus promoting development and innovation in critical and strategic mineral projects in Québec. Key examples of the Plan’s achievements include:
- Launch of the scientific research network specific to critical and strategic minerals.
- Launch of the Support Program for Mineral Scale-up or Primary Processing for Critical and Strategic Minerals.
- Creation and support of the Chaire de recherche sur les résidus amiantés of Université de Sherbrooke.
- Completion of a pilot project on the adoption of mineral traceability mechanisms for batteries (in French). Read the project’s final report from Propulsion Québec (PDF 9.59 Mb) (in French).
- Financial support to build a commercial demonstration plant (in French) for the production of scandium oxide.
- Financial assistance for research in the mining sector (in French) to fund a new line of research to support technological innovation and the development of new processes to address the environmental and technical challenges of critical and strategic mineral development.
To learn more about its implementation, read the summary as of March 31, 2023, of the 2020-2023 action plan (PDF 1.33 Mb) (in French).
The Plan’s origin
In 2019, the government undertook a process of public reflection on the development of critical and strategic minerals in Québec. From November 19, 2019, to February 7, 2020, six meetings were organized in the Abitibi-Témiscamingue, Capitale-Nationale, Côte-Nord, Montréal, Nord-du-Québec and Saguenay‑Lac-Saint-Jean regions.
The objective was to gather the views of regional partners and Indigenous communities on the direction the government should take. A total of 140 participants from the municipal, industrial, mining and environmental sectors took part in this discussion. Social acceptability, mineral recycling, the circular economy and the contribution of partners have been the subject of many exchanges.
A summary of this work was published, which presented the various views expressed, and formed the basis of the QPDCSM.
See the feedback summary (PDF 211 Kb).
Last update: January 29, 2024