Communities from Asia

People, coming from Asia, account for half of all immigrants to Quebec. Ethnic Chinese form the largest part of Asian communities, and many of them have roots in western Canada, where, in the 19th century, Sikhs, Chinese and Japanese immigrated as labourers to build railways, work as farm workers or in the wood industry.

In the 19th century and during the first decades of the 20th century, immigrants from these countries found official discrimination in Canada.

They were lumped together as Orientals only allowed to enter the country if they had at least 250$ (a big sum for those times), a financial requirement not demanded of Europeans.

The federal government of Canada ended its policies of discriminating by race or country, in the early 1960ies. Since that decade, many people came to Quebec from China, Vietnam, Laos, India, Pakistan, Thailand, Japan and many other lands. Dozen of thousands came as refugees, and many people in this group are unskilled, so their first jobs are in restaurants, cleaning, as domestics and so on. They study and they find work as professionals or skilled workers.

Most of the immigrants from Asia (as well as from any other continent) establish in Montreal and they settle in Cote-des-Neiges, Parc-Extension Each community has its festivals, and there are many common celebrations.

Besides, thousands of Quebeckers find cuisine from Asian countries the best of the world, so visitors can taste Chinese, Thai, Japanese, Persian, Indian, etc. dishes everywhere.

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