2021 Ministerial Transition Binder

Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Table of contents

Section 1 – Organizational Overview

CanNor at a Glance

CanNor headquarters
CanNor headquarters is in Iqaluit with regional offices in Whitehorse and Yellowknife, as well as a liaison office in Ottawa.

Our core responsibility is to support the conditions for a sustainable, diversified and innovative economy in collaboration with Northerners and Indigenous peoples, businesses, organizations, other federal departments and other levels of governments.

CanNor has offices across the territories and in Ottawa, out of which it champions the interests of Northerners and Indigenous peoples through its numerous activities including, delivering programs, developing policy, research and data, and supporting efficient and transparent impact assessments for major resource and infrastructure projects.

Organizational Chart
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  • President (Deputy Minister)
    Iqaluit and Ottawa
    Paula Isaak
    • Director, Pilimmaksaivik
    • VP, Pan-Territorial Operations
      • Regional Director
      • Regional Director
      • Regional Director
    • Director, Corporate Services and CFO
    • VP, Policy, Planning, Communications and NPMO
      • DG, Policy and Planning
        • Director,Strategic Policy
      • DG, Northern Projects Management Office
      • Director, Communications
Departmental Planned Spending

(amounts include Budget 2021 investments)

Text alternative for Departmental Planned Spending
2019-20 2020-21 2021-22 2022-23 2023-24
Grants and Contributions $46,756,093 $79,470,279 $81,272,258 $69,683,760 $50,529,500
Operating $20,406,375 $21,749,005 $23,307,934 $23,228,056 $22,757,764
Total $67,162,468 $101,219,284 $104,580,192 $92,911,816 $73,287,264

CanNor's activities are organized in four sectors in support of territorial priorities:


  • Delivers CanNor's grants and contributions programs through continuous and targeted processes.
  • Conducts outreach and pathfinding activities to support client access to economic development services, programs and other funding options within CanNor and across government.

Northern Projects Management Office (NPMO)

  • Ensures efficient federal environmental review processes for proposed resource development and infrastructure projects in the territories by coordinating federal departments' participation in all of the environmental assessment processes of major projects in the North.
  • Provides issues management and pathfinding services in relation to environmental assessments for Indigenous organizations and industry proponents.
  • Oversees and coordinates Crown consultations in relation to major projects.

Policy & Advocacy

  • Provide strategic and program policy advice with regard to economic development, diversification, and opportunities in the North. 
  • Champions the economic interests of the North within and outside government, including international fora.
  • Contributes an evidence-based Northern lens to overall federal policy and decision-making, informed by research and analysis, and close working relationships with key stakeholders, partners and other government departments.

Pilimmaksaivik (Federal Centre of Excellence for Inuit Employment in Nunavut)

  • CanNor hosts Pilimmaksaivik, which is responsible for coordinating a whole-of-government approach to building a representative federal public service in Nunavut, as described under Article 23 of the Nunavut Agreement. Article 23 commits to the employment of Inuit within Nunavut at a level commensurate with their demographic representation (i.e., approximately 85%).
  • Pilimmaksaivik works toward this by reducing barriers for recruitment, designing and delivering cultural competency training, and coordinating workplace wellness activities.

CanNor's Strategic Priorities

In 2019, CanNor developed its Pan-Territorial Growth Strategy to serve as a roadmap to robust and inclusive economies across Canada's territories. Informed by a series of engagement activities among wide range of individuals, communities and organizations, the Growth Strategy is also aligned with the overarching Arctic and Northern Policy Framework, which was released by Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs in 2019.

With the support and collaboration of northern and federal partners, CanNor's strategic objectives are guided by the Growth Strategy's four interrelated areas of action:

Skilled workforce

Strengthen the northern workforce and equip Northerners with the tools, skills, and experience they need to succeed in the workforce, now and into the future.

Infrastructure investments and development

Leverage upcoming investments and the ongoing operation of major infrastructure projects to maximize local and regional economic opportunities.

Resource development

Support the sustainable development of the mining and energy sectors, throughout the development cycle, in a manner which increases community capacity, maximizes jobs and wealth within the territories, and produces positive economic impacts in communities.

Diversification and innovation

Foster the sustainable growth of other economic sectors with a focus on strengthened entrepreneurship and northern innovation.

CanNor and Canada's Regional Development Agencies

CanNor is one of seven regional development agencies (RDAs) that work to advance and diversify regional economies.

Regional Development Agencies
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Region Name of Regional Development Agency
Territories (Yukon, Northwest Territories, Nunavut) Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor)
British Columbia Pacific Economic Development Canada (PacifiCan)
Prairies (Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba) Prairies Economic Development Canada (PrairiesCan)
Northern Ontario Federal Economic Development Agency for Northern Ontario (FedNor)
Southern Ontario Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev)
Quebec Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions (CED)
Atlantic Canada (Newfoundland & Labrador, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia) Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA)

Key Grants and Contributions Programs

CanNor's grants and contributions programs provide funding to support the development of key economic sectors such as community and business development, mining, tourism, fisheries, cultural industries.

By conducting outreach and pathfinding activities, through offices in each territory, CanNor enhances its support to clients as they navigate the economic development services and programs available to assist them. The Agency also proactively seeks out and leverages alternative funding sources from across government, and refer and connect clients seeking access to other funding options.

CanNor-Specific Programs

Inclusive Diversification and Economic Advancement in the North (IDEANorth)
  • Supports foundational investments to advance economic growth, business scale-up and economic infrastructure.
  • $18.2M* per year ongoing; $60M* over five years.
Northern Aboriginal Economic Opportunities Program (NAEOP)
  • Supports development for Indigenous communities and businesses.
  • $10.8M* per year ongoing.
Northern Isolated Community Initiatives Fund (NICI)
  • Supports community-led projects for local and Indigenous food production.
  • $12.5M* over five years.
Northern Adult Basic Education Program (NABEP)
  • Enhances literacy and workplace skills.
  • $4.5M* per year.

M = million.
* Grants and Contributions funding amounts only.

Temporary supports during the Covid-19 pandemic

Northern Business Relief Fund (NBRF) and the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF) provided direct support of approximately $31.4M* to territorial SMEs during the pandemic. These funds reimbursed fixed costs for businesses that were forced to reduce operations due to public health measures. Additionally, NBRF and RRRF provided approximately $11.8M* in indirect support through Community Futures networks.

M = million.
* Grants and Contributions funding amounts only.

National Programs Delivered in the Territories by CanNor

Regional Economic Growth Through Innovation (REGI)
  • Supports the development of regional innovation ecosystems and business scale-up.
  • $2.1M* over five years.
Jobs and Growth Fund (JGF)
  • Supports green economy transition, fostering an inclusive recovery and enhancing competitiveness.
  • $20.2M* over three years.
Canada Community Revitalization Fund (CCRF)
  • Helps stimulate local economies, create jobs and improve the quality of life for Canadians from coast to coast to coast.
  • $15.1M* over two years.
Tourism Relief Fund (TRF):
  • Helps local tourism businesses in adapting their products and services to public health measures, support their recovery and position them for growth.
  • $6M* over two years
Regional Air Transportation Initiative (RATI)
  • Helps ensure regional air transport ecosystem remains operational and adapts to new pandemic realities to support businesses and communities.
  • $2.5M* over two years.
Women Entrepreneurship Strategy (WES)
  • Supports women-led businesses.
  • $2.8M* over five years.
Black Entrepreneurship Program† (BEP)
  • Supports Black Canadian business owners and entrepreneurs grow their businesses.
  • † FedDev Ontario administers this program for the territories with CanNor support; CanNor did not receive carve-out funds.
  • $350.8M over four years across RDAs.

M = million.
* Grants and Contributions funding amounts only.

Section 2 – Territorial Overview

Pan-Territorial Overview

Nunavut, the Northwest Territories, and the Yukon represent 40% of Canada's landmass, with a population of 127,000, over half of whom are Indigenous, and where 60% of the population is under the age of 40.

  • The resource sector remains a cornerstone of the northern economy. The mining industry continues to be the largest private sector contributor to the territories' economies, accounting for approximately 23% of the GDP in 2020 and likely to reach over 28% by 2024. However, opportunities exist for growth in the blue economy, food sectors, the knowledge economy and cultural and traditional sectors.
  • The territories are unexplored for minerals with the potential for significant regional economic benefits, Indigenous participation and supply of critical minerals essential to Canada's economic security and transition to a low-carbon economy.
  • Much of Canada's mineral resource potential lies in the territories; as 76% of the projects north of 60° are undeveloped. Untapped resources include oil reserves estimated at 18.3 billion barrels in Nunavut, 1.2 billion barrels in the Northwest Territories, 900 million barrels in the Yukon. Natural gas resources are estimated at 181.4 trillion cubic feet in Nunavut, 16.4 trillion cubic feet in the Northwest Territories, and 8 trillion cubic feet in the Yukon.
    GDP by Sector, Yukon/NWT/Nunavut Combined

    Source: Statistics Canada, 2020

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    Over half of the territories' GDP (55%) is from the public sector and extractive industries (i.e. mining).

    Sector Percentage of Territorial GDP
    Public Sector 32%
    Extractive Industries 23%
    Construction 11%
    Real Estate, Rental and Leasing 11%
    Transportation and Warehousing 2%
    Retail Trade 4%
    Arts, Information and Culture 3%
    Other 14%
  • Economic development and growth throughout the territories are challenging due to a sparse and widely distributed population; a significant infrastructure deficit; skills gaps; climate change; high energy, living and operational costs; and cyclical downturns associated with fluctuations in the levels of resource development activity.
  • Overall, the outlook for the near future is positive, despite the persistent decline in mining exploration investment activities and the planned closure of diamond mines in the Northwest Territories. The growth in the Yukon and Nunavut is driven by the mining sector.

COVID-19 Impacts

  • The territories were shielded from the worst of the economic impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic where travel restrictions and isolation periods helped minimize the introduction of the virus and kept the territories' internal economies mostly open throughout the pandemic.
    Forecasted GDP Change

    Source: Conference Board of Canada, 2021

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    This graph illustrates forecasted GDP changes between 2019 and 2023 in the Yukon, the Northwest Territories, and Nunavut.

    Yukon Northwest Territories Nunavut
    2019 +0.7% -8.1% +6.5%
    2020 +1.3% -14.2% +7.4%
    2021 +11.1% +14.2% +11.2%
    2022 +4.7% +1.8% +3.2%
    2023 +5.9% -2.8% +5.0%
  • In 2020, Nunavut and the Yukon were the only two jurisdictions in Canada to record a positive growth rate in GDP, primarily driven by increasing mineral production and the relatively large public sector.
  • The transportation sector and tourism-related industries such as accommodations and food services were hit hard and required significant federal and territorial subsidies to stay afloat.

CanNor Support for COVID-19 Relief

  • Through the Northern Business Relief Fund (NBRF) and the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF) CanNor provided direct support to over 560 territorial SMEs through the end of 2020-21, providing approximately $31.4 million in relief and recovery funding. This funding served to maintain an estimated 1,685 jobs across the territories – jobs that otherwise may have been lost.


  • The Yukon, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut receive their legislative authority – the ability to create laws – from the federal government.
  • Through a process of devolution, territorial governments have authority over public education, health and social services, as well as the administration of justice and municipal government.
  • The Yukon and the Northwest Territories gained control of their lands and resources through Devolution Agreements in 2003 and 2014, respectively. Nunavut is in the process of negotiating a Devolution Agreement for lands and resources.
  • Most regions in the territorial North are governed by modern land claims – constitutionally protected treaties with Indigenous peoples involving the Indigenous, federal and territorial governments. Modern treaties are key tools for achieving reconciliation and establish renewed nation-to-nation, Inuit-Crown, government-to-government relationships based on respect, cooperation, partnership, and the recognition of rights.
  • Modern land claims include co-management governance provisions (federal, territorial, Indigenous) for lands and resource management, as well as for the overall environmental assessment (EA) of major projects.

CanNor Support for Economic Reconciliation

CanNor works with Indigenous communities to increase their capacity to participate in and benefit from economic opportunities. Through the Northern Aboriginal Economic Opportunities Program's (NAEOP), CanNor was able to provide 23 unique Indigenous communities with approximately $6.5 million across 40 projects to enhance economic infrastructure, increase employment, and improve conditions for community economic development.

In addition, Indigenous recipients make up approximately 70% of all CanNor programming in 2020-21.

Key Drivers and Challenges


  • The infrastructure deficit, including transportation and telecommunications, is a foundational challenge to economic growth in the territories. Only 1% of Canada's total road network can be found in the territories.
  • Inherent challenges, such as climate, remoteness and reliance on fossil fuels lead to higher construction and maintenance costs and increased construction time in the North. In addition, climate change is threatening existing infrastructure as thawing permafrost directly impacts the integrity of building foundations, roads, shortened winter road season, runways, and pipelines.
  • Infrastructure gaps differ among territories, e.g., all communities in Nunavut and several Northwest Territories communities rely exclusively on marine transportation and/or aviation, where the Yukon has a well-developed road network with access points to British Columbia and Alaska.
  • Although significant new developments are on the horizon, access to reliable, affordable high-speed broadband internet service is a barrier to Northerners' participation in the digital economy, and limits access to essential services such as health care, education, government, public safety and banking.
Northern Transportation Infrastructure

Source: Library of Parliament, 2019

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This map illustrates key transportation links across the territories:

  • Almost all communities in the Yukon are connected by all-season roads.
  • Many of the Northwest Territories' communities are also connected by roads, though some are only winter roads, and certain communities are only available by air or through marine transport.
  • In Nunavut, no communities are connected to the rest of Canada by road. They must be reached by air, or through marine transport during the summer.
CanNor Support for Infrastructure

CanNor's IDEANorth program, in 2020-21, provided $15.1 million toward 72 projects across the territories, of which $7.2 million went toward 16 small-scale infrastructure projects. These projects supported a variety of northern industries and businesses, ranging from multipurpose infrastructure to clean energy.


  • Diesel continues to be a significant source of energy at the community level across the territories, despite efforts to introduce clean energy technology. Diesel power is more expensive and produces more greenhouse gas emissions than grid-connected electricity and significantly raises the cost to households and industry. Clean and renewable energy like biomass energy projects are helping to displace the use of diesel, reducing environmental impacts and improving socio-economic conditions. Greater investment in these technologies will be required to allow communities and industry to reduce their carbon footprint. 
    Territorial Electricity Generation by Energy Source

    Source: Canada Energy Regulator, 2018

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    Yukon Northwest Territories Nunavut
    Hydroelectricity 94% 70% 0%
    Petroleum 6% 21% 100%
    Natural Gas 0% 5% 0%
    Solar 0% <1% 0%
    Wind 0% 4% 0%
    Source: Canada Energy Regulator, 2018
CanNor Support for Clean Energy

CanNor supported 10 projects in 2020-21 that promote the transition to a greener economy, support greenhouse gas mitigation and clean technology product development and adoption, and foster the green transformation and adaptation of SMEs. For example, in Whitehorse, Yukon, CanNor invested $3 million into the Haeckel Hill Wind Farm to expand the availability of renewable energy and reduce local reliance on diesel fuel. An estimated 75 new jobs will be created by the project.


  • The current skills gap within the North limits the ability of Northerners to take advantage of critical opportunities for economic growth.
  • Barriers to increased participation in the workforce include few training and post-secondary education programs and facilities in the North, limited access to affordable transportation, and limited employment opportunities and services that enhance employment, e.g., daycare.
    Unemployment Rate

    Source: Statistics Canada, 2021

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    This chart represents unemployment rates between 2016 and 2020 within the territories and across Canada as a whole. At 8.6%, the average unemployment rate across the territories has been higher than the national average.

    Canada Territories
    2016 7.0% 9.3%
    2017 6.3% 8.2%
    2018 5.8% 7.9%
    2019 5.7% 8.4%
    2020 9.5% 9.2%
  • Lower educational achievement among Indigenous populations - 50% have not completed high school, compared to 11% of the non-Indigenous population - and a high rate of unemployment among Indigenous adults are key drivers for the need of skills development in the territories. In June 2020, 18.6% of the territorial adult Indigenous population was unemployed, compared to 3.4% of the non-Indigenous population.

    Population aged 25 - 64 without Secondary School Completion (2014-2019)

    Source: Statistics Canada, 2019

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    The chart compares off-reserve Indigenous, non-Indigenous and the total population aged 25 to 64 without secondary school completion from 2014 to 2019 in Nunavut, Northwest Territories, Yukon and Canada. Off-reserve Indigenous are less likely to have completed secondary school for the population aged 25 to 64. There is a large gap between off-reserve Indigenous and non-Indigenous in Nunavut and Northwest Territories.

  • A distinctive element of the territories is the presence of a mixed economy with individuals depending on traditional economies of hunting, fishing, and gathering, and combining these activities with participation in the wage economy. In addition to providing an economic benefit, traditional activities foster cultural continuity and strength for many northern Indigenous peoples.
CanNor Support to Indigenous Education and Employment

CanNor has a number of programs that support greater economic inclusion for Indigenous Northern residents including, the Northern Adult Basic Education Program (NABEP). NABEP is an education support program designed to help adult Northerners receive focused training to equip them to participate more fully in the labour market. The program is delivered through Yukon University, Aurora College, and Nunavut Arctic College. In 2020-21, CanNor contributed $4.5 million to these institutions to deliver an enhanced and culturally appropriate curriculum that responds to the needs of Indigenous and non-Indigenous Northerners, increasing the availability of skilled labour across the territories.

Territorial Profiles


Governance: Party system

Devolution Status: Territorial authority over lands and resources (2003)

Area (sq km) 482,443
Percentage of Canada's Landmass 4.8%
Territorial Capital Whitehorse
Number of Municipalities 17
Number of Municipalities Not Connected by Road Year-Round 1
Aeronautical Infrastructure 32
Railways (kilometres) 148
Estimated Total Population (2021) 42,596
Median Age of Population (2016) 39.5
% of Population Under 15 years (2016) 17.5%
% of Population Over 65 years (2016) 11.9%
Aboriginal Population (2016) (as % of territorial pop.) 8,195 (23.3%)
Number of Aboriginal Languages 8
  • Tourism is a growing industry with partnership potential.
  • Well-developed road network with access points to British Columbia, Alaska and an all-season highway which crosses the Arctic Circle.
  • In 2020, Yukon College officially became Yukon University, the first university in the territories.
  • Forecasted unemployment rate below 4% with strong wage growth.
  • The value of mineral production increased five-fold in 2020 due to new mines and increases in copper and gold. Other mines on the horizon will drive growth long term.
  • Labour shortage due in part to shifting workforce demographics.
  • Limited access to larger capital markets compared to provinces.

Northwest Territories

Governance: Consensus

Devolution Status: Territorial authority over lands and resources (2014)

Area (sq km) 1,346,106
Percentage of Canada's Landmass 13.5%
Territorial Capital Yellowknife
Number of Municipalities 33
Number of Municipalities Not Connected by Road Year-Round 18*
Aeronautical Infrastructure 56
Railways (km) 121
Estimated Total Population (2021) 44,991
Median Age of Population (2016) 34.0
% of Population Under 15 years (2016) 21.2%
% of Population Over 65 years (2016) 7.7%
Aboriginal Population (2016) (as % of territorial pop.) 20,860 (50.7%)
Number of Aboriginal Languages 11
  • New infrastructure (e.g., roads, power) can spur new economic development projects
  • Opportunities exist in critical minerals and remediation economy.
  • Long-term economic outlook is slumping due to reduced diamond mine production (e.g., majority of the production to slow by 2030), and declining investment in mineral exploration.
  • Shrinking labour force due to outmigration and shifting workforce demographics.
  • Climate change affecting seasonal roads needed for mining (i.e., unstable ice road seasons).


Governance: Consensus

Devolution Status: Federal authority over lands and resources

Area (sq km) 2,093,190
Percentage of Canada's Landmass 21%
Territorial Capital Iqaluit
Number of Municipalities 25
Number of Municipalities Not Connected by Road Year-Round 25
Aeronautical Infrastructure 36
Railways (km) 0
Estimated Total Population (2021) 39,536
Median Age of Population (2016) 25.1
% of Population Under 15 years (2016) 32.5%
% of Population Over 65 years (2016) 3.8%
Aboriginal Population (2016) (as % of territorial pop.) 30,550 (85.9%)
Number of Aboriginal Languages 2
  • Strength of the mining sector will lead economic growth in the short and medium term.
  • With skills and training, large youth population has the potential to meet future labour force needs.
  • Growing tourism sector resulting from increase of cruise-ship visits.
  • Limited infrastructure, such as lack of road transportation and broadband less than 50Mbps download speed, is increasing the cost of living and doing business.
  • High unemployment rates, especially outside the territorial capital.
  • New jobs created in Nunavut's mining industry will primarily go to non-residents due to the shortage of specific mining skills in the resident population.

Section 3 – Our Partners

Key Federal Partners

There are 25 federal departments and agencies that provide programs, funding and policy development in the territories. Collaboration amongst federal departments, territories and Indigenous groups help CanNor to capitalize on the North's immense opportunities and fuel economic growth. This collaborative approach allows for the integration of economic, social, cultural, and environmental considerations.

Key Territorial Counterparts

Each territory designates ministers and department structures in support of economic development. CanNor works with key departments in the territorial governments to collaborate in support of economic development. Your key counterparts are:

Government of Nunavut

David Akeeagok – Minister of Economic Development and Transportation*

  • Mandate: Work in partnership to support Nunavummiut (Nunavut residents) in stimulating and strengthening the economy, and to ensure the safe and effective movement of people, goods, and knowledge.

*Possible ministerial change as a result of the Nunavut election, October 25, 2021.

Government of the Northwest Territories

Caroline Wawzonek – Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment

  • Mandate: Promote economic self-sufficiency through funding, support, and marketing initiatives designed to foster a positive economic environment under two directional priorities – Economic Development and Mines and Petroleum Resources.

Government of Yukon

Ranj Pillai – Minister of Economic Development; Minister of Tourism and Culture; Minister responsible for the Yukon Housing Corporation; Minister responsible for the Yukon Liquor Corporation and the Yukon Lottery Commission

  • Mandate: Develop a thriving, prosperous and diversified economy by working with First Nations, business and industry partners, and federal and municipal governments through investments to support sustainable job creation, innovation, increased investment opportunities, market expansion, and business and industry growth.

Territorial Indigenous Organizations

The North is distinct from most other regions in the country given the significant role played by Indigenous businesses in the economy, particularly Indigenous Economic Development Corporations, which are some of the largest businesses headquartered in the territories. These corporations are part of a growing number of social enterprises in the North, pursuing both economic and social gains.

The following list of Indigenous organizations represent the majority of Indigenous peoples in the territories. (Please note this is not an exhaustive list.)


Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated

Aluki Kotierk – President

  • Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated (NTI) ensures that promises made under the Nunavut Agreement are carried out, coordinating and managing Inuit responsibilities set out in the Agreement and ensures that the federal and territorial governments fulfill their obligations.
Kivalliq Inuit Association

Kono Tattuinee – President

  • Kivalliq Inuit Association (KIA) is the Designated Inuit Organization (DIO) representing the interests of Inuit living in the Kivalliq Region; administers and monitors certain provisions of the Nunavut Final Agreement in the region; and, promotes their economic, social, political and cultural well-being.
Kitikmeot Inuit Association

Stanley Anablak – President

  • Kitikmeot Inuit Association (KIA) is the DIO representing the interests of Inuit living in the Kitikmeot Region; administers and monitors certain provisions of the Nunavut Final Agreement in the region; and, promotes their economic, social, political and cultural well-being.
Qikiqtani Inuit Association

Olayuk Akesuk – Acting President

  • Qikiqtani Inuit Association (QIA) is the DIO representing the interests of Inuit living in the Qikiqtani Region; administers and monitors certain provisions of the Nunavut Final Agreement in the region; and, promotes their economic, social, political and cultural well-being.
Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami

Natan Obed – President

  • Represents 65,000 Inuit across Inuit Nunangat, which includes the Inuvialuit Settlement Region in the Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Nunavik in Northern Quebec, and Nunatsiavut in Northern Labrador and land claims regions. A national advocacy organization that promotes awareness about political, social, cultural and environmental issues that impact Inuit communities.

Northwest Territories

Inuvialuit Regional Corporation

Duane Ningaqsiq Smith – Chair

  • Established in 1984 to manage the settlement outlined in the Inuvialuit Final Agreement, the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation represents the collective interests in dealings with governments and the world at large with a goal to continually improve the economic, social and cultural well-being of the Inuvialuit.
Sahtu Secretariat Incorporated

Charles McNeely – Chair

  • Designated Sahtu Organization with a mandate to assist and enable its members to intervene and participate in any hearings, environmental impact assessments, policy, or legislative reviews, or other decision-making or review processes which relate to the environmental or economic interests and concerns of its members.
Akaitcho Territory Government

Annie Boucher – Executive Director

  • The Akaitcho Territory Government represents the collective environmental, social, political, cultural, and economic interests of the Member First Nations – Deninu Ku'e First Nation, Lutsel K'e Dene First Nation, Smith's Landing First Nation and Yellowknives Dene First Nation – Dettah/ Ndilo.
Tłı̨chǫ Government

George Mackenzie – Grand Chief

  • Tłı̨chǫ Nation ratified the Tłı̨chǫ Agreement in 2005, the first combined comprehensive land claim and self-government agreement in the Northwest Territories, a modern Treaty with the Government of Canada. The agreement provides and defines certain rights relating to lands, resources and self-government.
Gwich'in Tribal Council

Kenny Kyikavichik – Grand Chief

  • The Gwich'in Tribal Council represents Gwich'in participants in the Mackenzie-Delta of the Northwest Territories and across Canada to protect and preserve the rights, interests and benefits of the Gwich'in under the Constitution Act, Treaty 11 and the Gwich'in Comprehensive Land Claim Agreement.
Northwest Territory Métis Nation

Garry Bailey – President

  • The Northwest Territory Métis Nation represents the Indigenous Métis of the South Slave region that includes the communities of Hay River, Fort Resolution and Fort Smith.
Dehcho First Nations

Kenneth Cayen – Grand Chief

  • The Dehcho First Nations represents 10 First Nations and two Métis Locals with the objective of regaining independence as a self-governing nation based on values, customs and traditions and to ensure future generations benefit from the wealth and health of the people and lands.

The Yukon

Council of Yukon First Nations

Peter Johnston – Grand Chief

  • Provides leadership and advocacy on common Yukon First Nation priorities. This includes working with the governments of Yukon and Canada to ensure representation and input on territorial boards and committees.

Private Sector

The private sector is a key partner in the North, investing in businesses, infrastructure, employment and training as well as a source of research, development and cold-climate innovation.

Sector representative organizations continue to present the North as a region of growth and untapped opportunity, especially in the area of resource development. The private sector often seeks federal leadership in addressing infrastructure gaps in an effort to lower operating costs. Companies large and small incurred greater costs during the pandemic to protect workers and communities while remaining operational.

Here are some key contacts:

The NWT and Nunavut Chamber of Mines

Ken Armstrong – President

  • Promotes the industry and the North to Northerners, Canadians, and the world at large on industry opportunities, concerns and issues. It advises governments, investors, the media, educational institutions, and the public on industry positions and initiatives.
Yukon Chamber of Mines

Ed Pert – President

  • Promotes the mineral sector in the Yukon with membership in industries related to exploration, mining and service and supply companies, contractors and individuals that have a direct or indirect interest in the mining industry.
Mining Association of Canada

Brendan Marshall – Vice President, Economic and Northern Affairs

  • The Mining Association of Canada (MAC) is a national organization representing the Canadian mining industry engaged in exploration, mining, smelting, semi-fabrication and supply. It promotes the industry nationally and internationally to governments and the public regarding mining's contribution to the economy and products. Membership includes more than 45 mine operators in iron ore, gold, diamonds, oil sands, steelmaking coal, base metals and uranium, and more than 50 members in engineering, environment and finance.
Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada

Keith Henry – President and CEO

  • Supports the growth of Indigenous tourism in Canada and works to address the demand for development and marketing of authentic Indigenous experiences while improving the socio-economic situation of Indigenous peoples across Canada.
Yukon Chambers of Commerce

Tammy Beese – Chair

  • Works to create a climate conducive to a strong private sector economy and is a leading voice of the Yukon's business community, providing advocacy and representation on issues affecting businesses across the Yukon.
NWT Chambers of Commerce

Yanik D'Aigle – President

  • Represents all regions of the NWT and all sectors of the northern economy, working in association with a network of community chambers in Inuvik, Norman Wells, Fort Simpson, Hay River, Thebacha and Yellowknife.
Baffin Regional Chambers of Commerce

Clarence Synard – President

  • Non-partisan organization which fosters, promotes and improves business development in a responsible manner through partnerships, communications, advocacy and initiatives. Hosts the annual Nunavut Trade Show and Conference.

Section 4 – 2021-22 Agenda for CanNor

Immediate, Medium-term

Sun-setting programs

  • Northern Adult Basic Education Program (NABEP):
  • Enhances literacy and workplace skills.
  • Sun-sets March 31, 2022.
  • Renewed in 2020; $9.76M equally split over two fiscal years (includes Operations and Maintenance amounts).
  • 2021 evaluation in progress.

Major Projects Under Review

  • Kudz Ze Kayah Project is a proposed open-pit and underground silver-zinc mine approximately 115 kilometres southeast of Ross River and 260 kilometres east of Whitehorse, Yukon. The project is owned by BMC Minerals. Mine operations are expected to span 10 years.
    • Status: Decision phase of the impact assessment review. Federal Decision Bodies (Department of Fisheries and Oceans, Natural Resources Canada and the Government of Yukon) have publicly indicated they are working towards making a decision by mid-October 2021.
  • The Coffee Gold Mine Project is a proposed open-pit gold mine, located approximately 130 kilometres south of Dawson City, Yukon. The project is owned by Newmont Goldcorp. Mine operations are expected to span 10 years.
    • Status: Decision phase of the impact assessment review. Federal Decision Bodies (Transport Canada, Infrastructure Canada and Natural Resources Canada and the Government of Yukon) are expected to make a decision between late October 2021 and January 2022.
  • Baffinland Iron Mines proposes to increase current production output of their operational Mary River Iron Ore Mine on Baffin Island (160 kilometres southwest of Pond Inlet, Nunavut) from 6 to 12 million tonnes per annum (MTPA), build a railroad to replace the trucking of ore between the mine site and Milne Inlet port, and increase the number of marine vessels (ore carriers) used to transport ore from Milne Inlet.
    • Status: Final public hearings scheduled for early November 2021 regarding impact assessment review. Public hearings for the project have been delayed, suspended, and extended multiple times due to unresolved technical concerns, insufficient time allocated to certain agenda items, and COVID-19 outbreaks in Nunavut. The Minister of Northern Affairs is required to make a decision 90 days after the review board's recommendation.
  • Meliadine Gold Mine (25km north Rankin Inlet, Nunavut), is proposing to install a set of waterlines for discharging saline effluent from there to a discharge location in Melvin Bay next to Rankin Inlet.
    • Status: Decision phase of the impact assessment review. The Nunavut Impact Review Board has recommended that the Project be approved. Minister of Northern Affairs is required to make a decision by October 28, 2021.

Proposed Outreach

CanNor staff will support the Minister's office with a proposed outreach plan that can include initial Ministerial engagements with key partners (e.g., "first calls" based on the list provided in Section 3, above), early announcements, as well as a more exhaustive list of events and engagements (a selection of early events provided below).

Selection of early events/engagements for possible ministerial participation

Association for Mineral Exploration (AME) Roundup Conference
  • This event is scheduled for Jan. 31 – Feb. 3, 2022 in Vancouver. This will be a hybrid in-person and virtual event.
  • AME's conference brings together more than 6,500 people annually to share innovative ideas, generate new connections and create collaborative solutions related to mineral exploration and development. This event attracts representatives from the northern mining sector.
Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC)
  • Event scheduled for March 7-10, 2022 in Toronto. At this point it is unknown if the event will be virtual or in person.
  • With over 25,800 attendees from 132 countries, PDAC provides opportunities to network with the global mineral exploration and mining community.  It is also attended by over 2500 investors and offers diverse presentations with nearly 800 speakers. This event attracts representatives from the northern mining sector.

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