The Manitoba government is supporting key economic development activities by providing grants to two initiatives totalling $875,000 that support government priorities in Manitoba’s forestry and fishery sectors, with an additional grant of $150,000 to support OneNorth, Indigenous and Northern Relations Minister Eileen Clarke announced today.
“All three of these initiatives reflect important economic development opportunities for Indigenous and northern Manitobans and support numerous expressed provincial government priorities,” said Clarke. “Engagement and partnership opportunities are embedded across each initiative, supporting the advancement of economic reconciliation for project stakeholders and helping to position Indigenous and northern communities to emerge from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic in a position of strength.”
In partnership with Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development, grant funding of up to $875,000 will be distributed between the following two initiatives:
• $675,000 will be provided to Advance Commercial Fishery Certification and increase market competitiveness for Manitoba’s commercial fisheries.
– Lack of fishery sustainability certification is limiting access to high-value international markets for Manitoba fish products. This initiative will provide evidence to markets that Manitoba fisheries are moving to achieve certification to ensure and enhance product competitiveness. Indigenous fishing communities will be directly engaged in the initiative through their involvement in collaborative stock monitoring programs that provide the fishery data needed to support fishery pre-certification assessments and the subsequent development of fishery improvement projects that advance fisheries towards full certification assessment.
• $200,000 will be provided to improve the viability of Manitoba’s forest sector by encouraging enhanced Indigenous participation in the forest economy.
– Through a service delivery partnership with FPInnovations, the funding will be used to support Indigenous people with identifying and pursuing forest-sector opportunities. The forest-sector opportunities could provide increased economic benefits for Indigenous people while complementing and enhancing the viability of existing industry. FPInnovations is a private, non-profit organization that specializes in supporting Canada’s forest sector, with significant experience supporting Indigenous forest economic development initiatives.
“These initiatives provide tremendous opportunities for Manitoba’s resource sectors,” said Agriculture and Resource Development Minister Blaine Pedersen. “This funding will result in increased economic opportunities for Manitoba’s Indigenous people while also supporting the sustainability and viability of the industries.”
Manitoba Indigenous and Northern Relations, in partnership with Manitoba Economic Development and Jobs, will also provide grant funding of up to $150,000 to OneNorth to develop its capacity to leverage assets and actively pursue economic development opportunities related to the Hudson’s Bay rail line in the north.
“OneNorth is a unique partnership that will build and further leverage northern infrastructure,” said Economic Development and Jobs Minister Ralph Eichler. “This funding will allow the group to continue seeking additional economic development opportunities in northern Manitoba, helping strengthen Manitoba’s economy.”
Clarke added that funding will start flowing this spring and the projects collectively contribute to a forward-looking strategy to enhance economic development opportunities in partnership with Indigenous and northern communities.
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