Iqaluit, NU (May 20, 2010) - The Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians, and the Honourable Eva Aariak, Premier of Nunavut, today announced additional financial support for the construction of a fisheries research vessel to be operated by the Government of Nunavut.
“The Government of Canada is pleased to partner with the Government of Nunavut to build this much-needed dedicated fisheries research vessel. Support for Arctic research is vital to achieving the goals set out in the Northern Strategy,” said Minister Strahl.
“This announcement is very welcome news in the North. Together with other projects funded under the Arctic Research Infrastructure Fund, this will help us to build on the historic achievements of the International Polar Year,” added the Honourable Leona Aglukkak, Minister of Health and Member of Parliament for Nunavut.
"Our mandate, Tamapta/CLcC: Building our future together, supports working in partnership with government to help communities become more productive and self-reliant. Nunavummiut will continue to be stewards of our environment and share lessons learned by being actively involved with fisheries research in our adjacent waters,” said Premier Aariak.
The past two years of activities have demonstrated that the current research platform is not sufficient to meet the research needs for Nunavut's inshore fishery. A fisheries research vessel will upgrade the Government of Nunavut's research capabilities to include a larger, safer research platform with a complete capability to operate within the full range of Nunavut's territorial sea and near coastal waters over an entire Arctic marine season.
This project is a collaborative effort by both governments. It will help Nunavut acquire a new vessel to serve as a research platform able to undertake critical scientific research in support of sustainable development in the fishery and the protection of the marine environment. It is funded through the Arctic Research Infrastructure Fund, an $85 million program created by Canada's Economic Action Plan to renovate and upgrade research facilities across the North.
The $320,000 federal contribution announced today is in addition to the $1,874,560 already invested in the construction of this vessel. This additional funding will help the Government of Nunavut complete the construction of the vessel. The Government of Nunavut also purchased $263,000 worth of related equipment.
The project represents an important step in the Government of Canada's plan to unlock the North's enormous potential, as it will help strengthen and diversify the Northern economy. Northerners will participate in the operations and maintenance of the vessel and Inuit will receive training for inshore fishery through the Nunavut Fisheries Training Consortium for careers.
Twenty projects selected through an open competitive process, including this one, receive funding from the Arctic Research Infrastructure Fund in different sites in Canada's North. Twelve are led or co-led by Northerners.
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