Aglukkaq, Aariak applaud passage of Northern Jobs and Growth Act
“Helps create a more stable investment climate in the North”
The House of Commons is now on its summer break — but before heading off, MPs approved nearly 20 bills in a single June 18 vote.
Among those bills: Bill C-47, the Northern Jobs and Growth Act, aimed at meeting longstanding federal land claims agreement obligations across the territories. The bill became law June 19, when it received royal assent.
“These changes will make the review process for northern major projects more efficient and predictable, which helps create a more stable investment climate in the North,” said Nunavut MP Leona Aglukkaq in a June 19 statement. “These changes will reinforce the work CanNor’s Northern Projects Management Office continues to do with industry, Aboriginal communities, and territorial partners to strengthen the economy across the three territories.”
The Northern Jobs and Growth Act includes the Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act and the Northwest Territories Surface Rights Board Act, along with amendments related to the Yukon Surface Rights Board Act.
The Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act, or NUPPAA, intended to boost resource development in Nunavut, establishes timelines for the review of projects, creates social and environmental monitoring plans, and sets up new enforcement rules.
“The Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act builds transparency and certainty that will allow the Government of Nunavut to take on the management of lands and resources without disrupting development and the benefits it brings,” said Premier Eva Aariak in a June 19 news release. “We were pleased to participate in every stage of developing this federal legislation.”
The GN said last year that it welcomed Bill C-47.
Peter Taptuna, Nunavut’s minister of Economic Development and Transportation, said June 19 that the “new legislation is a boost to responsible resource development and economic growth in Nunavut. Communities and industry have more certainty now about how decisions are made and how long they will take. This is essential to attracting new investment and the jobs that go along with it.”
But Nunavut regulators said earlier this year that the new regulations won’t work unless the Nunavut Impact Review Board and the Nunavut Planning Commission get more funding from Ottawa.