Western Economic Diversification Canada

Western Economic Diversification Canada

January 26, 2012 16:45 ET

Harper Government Spurs Economy in B.C.'s Central Coast

BELLA BELLA, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Jan. 26, 2012) - Today, Senator Yonah Martin, on behalf of the Honourable Lynne Yelich, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification, announced support for the Heiltsuk Economic Development Corporation to upgrade the fish processing plant in Bella Bella, British Columbia.

"Our Government's top priority is the economic recovery and Canada's commercial fishing industry plays a vital role in helping to keep our economy strong," said Senator Martin on behalf of the Honourable Lynne Yelich, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification. "The upgraded Bella Bella Fish Plant will increase the amount of seafood processed on the central coast of B.C., creating more jobs and supporting economic growth."

This investment of over $1 million in Western Diversification Program (WDP) and West Coast Community Adjustment Program (WestCCAP) funding will assist in building renovations and repairs to the current facility. It will also enable upgrades to the refrigeration system and ice maker, as well as the acquisition of capital equipment necessary to support the processing of fresh marine finfish and shellfish products at the Bella Bella Fish Plant.

"This project is much more than just a fish plant - it is the backbone of our efforts to revitalize the central coast fishing and marine industry, and will be the main driver for the economy of this village," said Ray Gerow, Chief Executive Development Officer Heiltsuk Economic Development Corporation. "We are eagerly looking forward to having it back up in full operation and greatly appreciate the funding provided by the federal government. Without this funding we would not have been able to attract other funding sources, and this project would not have been realized."

The Government of Canada is committed to advancing the interests of Canada's traditional industries and helping them continue to provide high-quality jobs in the communities that depend on these industries. Investments that support our resource industries, such as the fishing industry, will be essential to realizing economic opportunities, creating employment, and enhancing the Canadian advantage.

Western Economic Diversification Canada works with the provinces, industry associations and communities to promote the development and diversification of the western economy, coordinates federal economic activities in the West and advances the interests of western Canadians in national decision making.

The West Coast Community Adjustment Program will provide more than $7 million to support economic growth, job creation and the future sustainability of BC coastal communities affected by challenges within the salmon fishery.

The Fisheries Legacy Trust, comprised of the 13 west coast Community Futures, is delivering this initiative on behalf of Western Economic Diversification Canada. The Government of Canada supports initiatives that combat challenges facing traditional industries, protect resources in affected areas in order to support the long-term success of resource-dependent communities.

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Contact Information

  • Jaime Burke
    Regional Communications Manager
    Western Economic Diversification Canada
    (604) 666-1318

    Ray Gerow
    Chief Executive Development Officer
    Heiltsuk Economic Development Corporation
    (250) 957-2217 ext. 225

    WD Toll-Free Number:1-888-338-WEST (9378)
    Teletypewriter (TTY): 1-877-303-3388