Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

July 26, 2009 13:30 ET

Federal Government's Northern Strategy Delivers for All Canadians

Ministers Highlight Progress Towards Canada's Northern Vision

GATINEAU, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - July 26, 2009) - The Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Metis and Non-Status Indians, together with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Honourable Lawrence Cannon, today released "Canada's Northern Strategy", a document and website that outline the Government of Canada's ongoing work and future plans for Canada's North.

"Our Government is making the North one of our top priorities, placing it higher on the agenda than it has been in many decades," said Minister Strahl. "We have a clear vision for the North as a healthy, prosperous region within a strong and sovereign Canada and we are acting to ensure this vision is realized. This is not an exercise in promise-making, we are moving forward with our commitments and ensuring results are benefiting Northerners and all Canadians."

"In addition to advancing our Northern interests at home, our Government's Northern Strategy builds on our international partnerships," said Minister Cannon. "Through our robust Arctic foreign policy, we are delivering on the international dimension of the Northern Strategy, affirming our leadership as an Arctic power and our stewardship and ownership in the region. We are leveraging our international leadership and strong bilateral relationships to promote Canadian interests concerning the Arctic."

"The Northern Strategy is truly an integrated approach to ensuring the North's potential is realized," said Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of Health and Member of Parliament for Nunavut. "In addition to initiatives that will benefit all Canadians, including sovereignty, the environment and economic development, we are working with Northerners to advance their governance goals while also addressing the need for housing, health care, skills development and other services in the North. All of these things will give Northerners the tools they need to play an even greater role in the Canadian economy."

The paper - entitled, Canada's Northern Strategy: Our North, Our Heritage, Our Future - provides a comprehensive explanation of the Northern Strategy and its four pillars of exercising Canada's Arctic sovereignty, protecting the North's environmental heritage, promoting social and economic development, and improving and devolving northern governance. The paper also outlines Canada's vision going forward, including major investments under Budget 2009, Canada's Economic Action Plan.

Regular updates on the Northern Strategy will also be available through the government's new website: www.northernstrategy.gc.ca.

Since 2007, the federal government has been working to advance its Northern Strategy objectives. A few important initiatives are:

- $156 million to support Canadian participation in International Polar Year;

- $200 million over two years for the renovation and construction of new housing units in the North;

- Procuring new Arctic Patrol Ships;

- $50 million over five years for the creation of a northern economic development agency;

- $85 million over two years to maintain and upgrade Arctic research facilities;

- $90 million over five years for the renewal of the Strategic Investments in Northern Economic Development program;

- Procuring a new Polar Icebreaker - the CCGS John G. Diefenbaker;

- $37.6 million to support initiatives related to the proposed Mackenzie Gas Project; and

- Expansion and modernization of the Canadian Rangers.

This release is also available on the Internet at www.inac.gc.ca.

Contact Information

  • Office of the Honourable Chuck Strahl
    Nina Chiarelli
    Press Secretary
    819-997-0002
    or
    Indian and Northern Affairs Canada
    Media Relations
    819-953-1160