This website will change as a result of the dissolution of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, the creation of Indigenous Services Canada and the eventual creation of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada. During this transformation, you may also wish to consult the updated Indigenous and Northern Affairs home page.
Lands and natural resources are among the most valuable assets held by First Nations and Inuit communities, and their effective and sustainable use is critical for Indigenous economic development. As outlined in the Federal Framework for Aboriginal Economic Development (PDF – 25 pages, 1.43 Mb), the Government of Canada intends to unlock the full economic potential of Indigenous peoples, their communities and their businesses by promoting Indigenous partnerships with the provinces and territories and the private sector.
With this goal in mind, in April 2014, the Government of Canada combined five community-based economic and land management support programs into the Lands and Economic Development Services Program. This will help increase Indigenous participation in the economy through laws and programs, and allow communities greater control over land management.
The program, administered by Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC), offers different types of funding to help First Nations and Inuit communities address the following:
Economic development in First Nations and Inuit communities
The Lands and Economic Development Services Program enables First Nations and Inuit communities to:
deliver economic development services, such as community economic development planning, capacity development initiatives and proposal development
assume greater control over reserve lands, resources and the environment on behalf of the Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs and in accordance with the Indian Act
help build capacity to effectively manage their lands in accordance with the First Nations Land Management Act's various tools, such as land codes, individual agreements, land management systems and environmental agreements
provide support services that prevent contamination of reserve lands under INAC custodial responsibility
Priority is given to:
strengthen land and environmental management, and economic development as a key function of a strong local government
support Indigenous participation in major resource development initiatives
support First Nations Land Management Regime readiness, or strategic economic development and associated land use planning
initiatives that promote on-reserve environmental management and pollution prevention, with an emphasis on waste management
environmental benefits for First Nations and Inuit individuals, businesses or communities, such as improved waste management or rehabilitation of contaminated lands on reserves under INAC's custodial responsibility