Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Labrador, Aug 12 (Canadian-Media): Following Labrador’s important contribution to the ocean-based economy, Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) is increasing its presence in Labrador to better serve its residents, media reports said.
Fisheries and Oceans Canada/Facebook
The existing DFO office in Happy Valley-Goose Bay has been reprofiled into an Area office and establishing a new Area Director position and other new positions, to increase its service capacity to the Big Land and its people.
With the creation of this new Area, Fisheries and Oceans Canada has three administrative Areas in Newfoundland and Labrador: Eastern and Central Newfoundland; Southern and Western Newfoundland; and Labrador.
Commercial fishing is a key economic contributor in Labrador.
“Labrador is an important economic centre within the province. With emerging oil and gas exploration and new and evolving fishing activities...we are at a critical juncture to invest and position Labrador for a prosperous future. Our investment today demonstrates that we are listening to Labradorians and our government understands that the timing for enhanced service delivery in Labrador is now, ” member of Parliament for Labrador, Yvonne Jones.
There are 12 small craft harbours operated by 10 harbour authorities to provide important infrastructure for commercial fisheries and coastal Labrador communities.
DFO is also committed to advancing reconciliation and a renewed relationship with Indigenous peoples of Labrador, one of the largest Indigenous populations in Atlantic Canada, on innovative approaches to program and service delivery.
The Government of Canada is also investing in Labrador through the new Northern Integrated Commercial Fisheries Initiative. Fisheries and Oceans Canada has invested, since 2017, more than $24 million in Labrador through Indigenous partnerships and infrastructure programs. Over $4.5 million is in direct partnership investments with Indigenous organizations while $20 million is being invested in Small Craft Harbours’ improvements in Indigenous communities.
“Our investments in Labrador reflect our government’s commitment to a renewed relationship with Indigenous Peoples...in supporting real economic growth opportunities and are reflective of how fisheries are an important driver of economic development in Labrador,” Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard said.
The Northern Integrated Commercial Fisheries Initiative launched on May 24, 2019, provides funding and support to Indigenous groups for the development of Indigenous-owned communal commercial fishing enterprises and aquaculture operations.