COVID-19 Pandemic – Québec announces two economic measures for the forest sector

Québec City, April 7, 2020 – To support the forest sector during a period when all Québecers are engaged in a relentless struggle against the coronavirus (COVID-19), the Québec Government has unveiled two economic measures designed to provide some respite for companies dealing with the impacts of this extraordinary situation. Pierre Dufour, Québec’s Minister of Forests, Wildlife and Parks, who made the announcement, recalled the importance for everyone to comply with the following basic rules:

  • Do not travel from one region or city to another, unless absolutely necessary.
  • Do not assemble in groups, indoors or outdoors.
  • Stay at least two (2) metres away from other people at all times.

A safer workplace

First, to ensure that silvicultural work can be carried out safely in the forest, the timber marketing board (known by its French acronym BMMB) has begun to assess the additional costs generated by the introduction of physical distancing and safety measures for silvicultural workers in both the public and private forests. These costs will be added to the silvicultural work tariff grids for the year 2020-2021. Among other things, this exceptional measure will allow for the introduction of worker travel and lodging initiatives.

Postponement of payments for harvested volumes

To lighten the financial load of companies and provide them with the cash resources they need to weather the crisis, Minister Dufour has announced that volumes harvested in the public forests in and after March 2020 will not be invoiced until September 2020. Depending on individual companies’ harvesting rates, this measure involves an amount of approximately $60 million, invoicing for which will subsequently be spread over the remainder of the year 2020-2021.

Citation

“We believe the forest sector, like the Québec population as a whole, will be able to recover quickly from the last few weeks, which have been difficult from every point of view. There is no doubt in my mind that the measures introduced today will have a positive impact for companies and also for the workers that are their heart and soul. We have promised to support the industry from day one. Today, we are putting our words into action.”

– Pierre Dufour, Minister of Forests, Wildlife and Parks and Minister responsible for the Abitibi-Témiscamingue and Nord-du-Québec Regions.

During the pandemic

  • The MFFP is continuing its operations while being actively vigilant and continuously monitoring the development of the pandemic.
  • The MFFP’s mission is to ensure the conservation and development of the province’s forests, wildlife and parks from the standpoint of sustainable management, in order to contribute to the prosperity and quality of life of all Québecers.
  • The MFFP encourages everyone who would like additional information on COVID-19 to visit Québec.ca/coronavirus  or to call 1 877 644-4545.
  • Support companies in Québec by stimulating their sales and shopping local! Visit lepanierbleu.ca  for information on local shopping initiatives in Québec.

Related links

  • For information on the MFFP and to learn more about its activities and achievements, visit mffp.gouv.qc.ca and the following social media pages:

Facebook MFFP Facebook.com/ForetsFauneParcs
Twitter MFFP Twitter.com/MFFP_Quebec