Canada Economic Development

Canada Economic Development

January 14, 2010 10:30 ET

Government of Canada Grants $135,437 in Funding to Club Moto-Neige (La Tuque) Inc.

LA TUQUE, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - Jan. 14, 2010) - The Honourable Denis Lebel, Minister of State for Canada Economic Development, today announced that Club Moto-Neige (La Tuque) Inc. has been awarded $135,437 in non-repayable financial assistance through the Community Diversification program to acquire a high-performance snow grooming machine and thereby ensure users, including its own 400 members, access to better quality snowmobiling trails.

Founded in 1969, Club Moto-Neige (La Tuque) Inc. is a non-profit organization that oversees the upkeep of 560 kilometres of trails in Haute-Mauricie, including the #73 and #83 Trans-Quebec and #355 regional trails linking the Mauricie region to Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean, Centre-du-Quebec, Abitibi-Temiscamingue and the Capitale-Nationale. This new grooming machine will serve in maintaining the Haute-Mauricie paths, which are used by some 6,000 snowmobilers from Quebec, Canada and abroad every year.

"The importance of winter tourism to the Mauricie economy has already been well demonstrated. Indeed, it is largely due to the major spinoffs generated by this sector that Canada Economic Development was quick to lend its financial support to the organization's project. This funding is intended to support regional tourism industry stakeholders in their efforts to maximize the quality of the trails and make them safer for users. This new snow groomer will make it possible to better maintain the trails crisscrossing the region and thereby strengthen the ability of this vast territory to attract snowmobilers from here and all over," stated Minister Lebel.

Snowmobiling constitutes a key segment of the region's tourism market. With annual economic spinoffs estimated at some $34.6 million, of which 28% is from out-of-province tourists, Mauricie ranks fifth among Quebec's regions in terms of the tourism revenues generated by this sector of activity.

The Minister of State also announced his intention to meet with local economic stakeholders while in the La Tuque area for a stock-taking exercise on Canada's Economic Action Plan, 12 months after its adoption, in order to obtain their views on the effectiveness of this temporary economic stimulus measure. "As we move towards a return to fiscal balance, ideas on a variety of issues need to be discussed with socioeconomic stakeholders in the regions. The economy is a dynamic system that is constantly changing and it is imperative that we adjust. To play our cards right, we must clearly identify the needs of Quebec's various industries and gather the opinions of business leaders as to which sectors should be prioritized," he concluded, recalling the success of his similar consultation process held in early 2009.

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