The Bloc Quebecois leadership is hoping that 2017 will bring “an important wind of change” as its members begin searching for a new president.

Caucus chair Louis Plamondon said he feels his party is in a good position to take advantage of the division of votes between the Liberal and Conservative parties.

He praised the Bloc’s achievements of the past year, including supporting the Trudeau government in passing the Bill C-29, the Consumer Protection Act.

On Feb. 4, the Bloc will convene in Boucherville to hold a general assembly, in which the terms of its leadership race will be set. Plamondon said he regrets that interim leader Rheal Fortin will not run for the permanent position but expressed excitement at the possible candidacy of Parti Quebecois MNA Martine Ouellet.

“Mrs. Ouellet has a good reputation, she has experience with two races for the leadership of a provincial party,” he said. “She is also very knowledgeable about federal matters and has always assisted with the Bloc’s general assemblies.”

Party leadership is aiming to raise $3 million for the next federal election.

“There are many cases where the Bloc is going to have a visibility that will allow it to increase its credibility and its necessity in Ottawa,” said Plamondon.