Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Fisheries and Oceans Canada

March 02, 2010 15:00 ET

Fisheries Negotiations at British Columbia Treaty Tables

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 2, 2010) - The Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Canada, the Honourable Gail Shea, today issued the following statement:

"The Government of Canada is deferring the negotiation of fisheries components at treaty tables in British Columbia that involve salmon, pending the findings and recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry into the Decline of Sockeye Salmon in the Fraser River. The deferral of fisheries related negotiations will allow for treaty negotiations to be staged so that fish chapters in treaties can be informed by the findings and recommendations of the Inquiry.

"As Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, I will continue to manage and authorize BC salmon fisheries, including First Nations allocations of salmon for food, social and ceremonial purposes, and all participation in integrated commercial fisheries.

"The Fraser River sockeye salmon stocks have been in decline and the Commission of Inquiry has been established to investigate the matter. The Commissioner has been mandated with investigating the causes for the decline, assessing the current state of Fraser River sockeye salmon stocks and long term projections for those stocks, and making recommendations for improving the sustainability of the sockeye salmon fishery in the Fraser River. The Commission is expected to provide an interim report in August, 2010 followed by a final report by May 1, 2011. 

"The findings of the Commission of Inquiry may have implications for management of other Pacific salmon fisheries, and it is therefore prudent to defer negotiations on the fisheries components of treaties in British Columbia.

"The deferral will not affect late stage Final Agreement negotiations with Yale First Nation, Sliammon First Nation and In-SHUCK-ch Nation, which have reached this final stage after years of good faith discussions between all parties in the BC Treaty Process.

"The Government of Canada will continue to work with all interested parties to consider issues related to conservation and sustainability of this key resource for all Canadians."

Contact Information

  • Fisheries and Oceans Canada
    Nelson Kalil
    Media Relations
    Office of the Minister
    Fisheries and Oceans Canada
    Nancy Bishay
    Press Secretary