Secrétariat aux affaires intergouvernementales canadiennes
Mandate of the Secrétariat
The Secrétariat aux affaires intergouvernementales canadiennes (SAIC) is under the authority of the Minister for Canadian Intergovernmental Affairs, the Canadian Francophonie and Sovereignist Governance. Generally speaking, the SAIC advises the Québec government on Canadian intergovernmental relations. It prepares, presents and implements policy in this regard. It analyses the federal government’s policies and programs in view of how they affect Québec. It safeguards and promotes Québec’s interests. The SAIC is also responsible for relations with the governments of the provinces and coordinates all of Québec’s governmental activities in Canada.
The SAIC is responsible for constitutional issues and, on behalf of the Québec government, conducts all related negotiations.
Together with the departments of each sector, the SAIC takes part in the proceedings of the various Canadian intergovernmental conferences and plays a role in the elaboration and negotiation of agreements with the federal government and the governments of the other provinces. As advisor to Québec’s departments and public bodies, the SAIC formulates policies and adopts positions that affect relations with the other Canadian governments.
It coordinates relations with Francophones throughout Canada and monitors the implementation of the Québec Policy on the Canadian Francophonie. It also administers the interprovincial Francophone cooperation and support programs arising out of that policy.
The SAIC administers Québec’s representation network throughout Canada, namely, the offices in Moncton, Ottawa and Toronto as well as a branch office in Vancouver. This network maintains links between the Québec government and its federal and provincial counterparts.
Structure of the Secrétariat
Bureau du secrétaire général associé
The Bureau du secrétaire général associé coordinates the files that must be brought to the attention of the Associate Secretary General and also coordinates operational liaising with the office of the minister for Canadian Intergovernmental Affairs, the Canadian Francophonie and Sovereignist Governance, the Secrétariat général of the ministère du Conseil exécutif, the SAIC’s other administrative entities and the offices of the deputy ministers of the various departments. Together with the Direction générale de l'administration of the ministère du Conseil exécutif, it administers the SAIC’s human, financial, material and information technology resources.
The office performs the secretarial duties for the SAIC’s governance committee.
Among other things, it takes action on applications for travel outside Québec, in Canada, that are submitted for the SAIC’s approval by the government departments and agencies whose personnel are appointed and remunerated under the Public Service Act.
Under the Act respecting the Ministère du Conseil exécutif, the SAIC is the depositary of the original copy of every Canadian intergovernmental agreement entered into by Québec and the governments of Canada and the provinces. The office administers the registry of agreements and takes the necessary measures for avoiding the destruction, loss or alteration of those agreements.
Lastly, it is entrusted with the application, on behalf of the SAIC, of the Act respecting Access to documents held by public bodies and the Protection of personal information.
Direction des affaires économiques, culturelles et sociales
The Direction des affaires économiques, culturelles et sociales (DAECS) has the responsibility of planning, coordinating and following up on Canadian intergovernmental affairs in economic, cultural and social matters. Within this framework, it provides expert advice to the authorities of the SAIC and the departments and agencies of the Québec government.
It also elaborates intergovernmental policies and strategies and ensures the interdepartmental coordination of their implementation. It takes part in defining Québec’s position in interprovincial and federal-provincial meetings and attends ministers’ and deputy ministers’ conferences as ex officio member of the Québec delegation.
The DAECS analyses agreements to be concluded with the federal government or a provincial government, takes part in negotiations, if need be, and follows up on the agreements. It gives opinions on the pertinence of travelling outside Québec, in Canada.
Direction de la francophonie et des Bureaux du Québec au Canada
The Direction de la francophonie et des Bureaux du Québec au Canada (DFBQC) contributes to maintaining continuous relations with the provincial governments. It supports the activities of the government and its departments and agencies outside Québec, in Canada. It carries out geopolitical analyses and keeps a close watch on Canadian current events.
This administrative entity coordinates relations between the Québec government and the Francophone and Acadian communities in Canada. By involving Québec’s offices in Canada in its activities, it implements the Québec Policy on the Canadian Francophonie while supporting partnership or cooperation projects between Québec and Francophones in Canada.
Among other things, the DFBQC prepares and negotiates agreements related to the Canadian Francophonie between Québec and the provinces. It follows up on those agreements and programs and ensures that related activities are carried out.
It is responsible for coordinating the activities of Québec’s offices in Canada and ensuring the coherence of the guidelines and interventions affecting the offices. It sees to it that they have the necessary human, material and financial resources for attaining their goals.
Direction des politiques institutionnelles et constitutionnelles
The Direction des politiques institutionnelles et constitutionnelles (DPIC) ensures the integration of institutional and constitutional policy concerns into the activities of the Québec government. Together with the other SAIC branches, it analyses federal government policies and programs from the standpoint of their effect on Québec. It examines federal bills and studies Canadian constitutional case law. It analyses draft Canadian intergovernmental agreements that may have constitutional or institutional repercussions.
The DPIC also participates in elaborating Québec government policies that have an intergovernmental impact. It advises the SAIC authorities on constitutional matters. It stays abreast of and analyses the evolution of Canadian federalism and its institutions, and gives opinions on the meaning and scope of that evolution. From a comparative perspective, it follows the evolution of federalism throughout the world. Lastly, it analyses and keeps tabs on the work of Canadian and foreign organizations that study Québec matters, federalism in general, and Canadian intergovernmental relations in particular.
The DPIC coordinates, together with the departments concerned, the implementation of Québec’s policy on territorial integrity. The domestic component of this policy aims at upholding Québec's legislative authority over all the lands in the public domain.
It is also involved in the government talks with the various Aboriginal peoples of Québec aimed at reaching claims settlements.
Direction de la réflexion stratégique
In liaison with the other SAIC branches, the Direction de la réflexion stratégique (DRS) ensures the elaboration and development of strategic thinking to allow the government to better situate and orient its positions and interventions with regard to federal-provincial and interprovincial relations as well as constitutional matters. It advises the authorities of the SAIC on the strategic aspects of the Secrétariat’s relations.
As part of its mandate, the DRS carries out studies, research and analyses of a prospective nature with a view to identifying the principal issues, trends and problems facing Québec in the field of intergovernmental relations. It supplies avenues for reflexion and action, proposes strategies and prepares critical evaluations with regard to issues of substantial intergovernmental import. It analyses studies done by strategic planning or research organizations that concern matters with major intergovernmental implications for Québec.
Together with the other SAIC branches, it follows up and updates the Secrétariat’s strategic plan.
Send us an e-mail.
|Secrétariat aux affaires intergouvernementales canadiennes
875, Grande Allée Est - 3 e étage - Québec (Qc) G1R 4Y8 - 418 643-4011
|Last update: Febuary 19, 2013
Online as of: January 15, 2003