Every year since 1971 more Canadians left Quebec for another province than in the other direction.

Quebec has recorded negative net inter-provincial migration rates for each of the last 45 years, Statistics Canada figures show.

Every other province has at least two years of positive migration during this period.

The figures were highlighted in a Fraser Institute paper titled 'Interprovincial Migration in Canada: Quebeckers Vote with Their Feet'.

The French-speaking province's largest negative out migration came in 1977-78, when 46,500 more Canadians left the province than arrived.

The closest it came to posting positive a positive migration was 2003-04, when the net figure was -822.

Overall, Quebec lost 582,470 people to other Canadian provinces since 1971, many of them young people just starting their careers.

Figures show Quebec's birthrate is currently at an all-time low of 1.6 children born for every woman in the province in 2015.

Combined with an aging population and other demographic factors, the question becomes how the province makes up this shortfall.

Those who argue for increased immigration levels must tread cautiously as Quebeckers are sensitive about what they see as a threat to their cultural identity.

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The content of this article reflects the personal insight of Attorney Colin Singer and needs no disclaimer