Nunavut’s fishing industry gets $3.2 million for exploration, promotion

Funds will be split between six fishing and sealing projects

Baffin Fisheries is seen transferring shrimp in Iqaluit from its FV Sivulliq last November. CanNor announced $3.2 million in funding this week which will be distributed to six fishing and sealing projects throughout Nunavut. (Photo courtesy of Baffin Fisheries/Facebook)

By Nunatsiaq News

The federal government is putting $3.2 million into Nunavut’s fisheries.

The Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency, also known as CanNor, announced the new funding on Thursday. The money will be distributed to six fishing and sealing projects throughout the territory.

CanNor said that some of the funding is meant for promoting Nunavut’s fishing and sealing industries to new markets as well as for the promotion of redfish and char markets.

A portion of the funding will be dedicated to studying the potential of small-scale inshore fisheries for three communities: Arviat, Kinngait and Sanikiluaq.

And CanNor said the money will also go to creating safer working environments for fishery employees who work on vessels and in fish plants, with an emphasis on protection needed for workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Federal Northern Affairs Minister Dan Vandal met with representatives from the Government of Nunavut, Nunavut Tunngavik Inc., Qikiqtani Inuit Association and the fishing industry on Thursday to share the news.

“The territory’s offshore fishery provides jobs and opportunities in an industry that brings sustainable economic development to Nunavut communities and Nunavummiut,” Vandal said in a news release.

“This industry will continue to be vital in supporting communities as we build back better after the pandemic.”

The Nunavut Fisheries Association commissioned a report last year that found that Nunavut’s fishing industry contributed $112 million to the territory’s gross domestic product and created nearly 1,000 full-time jobs in 2019.

The association represents the four quota holders in Nunavut water: Qikiqtaaluk Corp., Arctic Fisheries Alliance, Baffin Fisheries and Pangnirtung Fisheries/Cumberland Sound Fisheries Partnership.

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