Fisheries are on the agenda next week when the National Aboriginal Fisheries Forum gets underway in Dartmouth, Novia Scotia, from March 29-31.
Co-hosted by the Atlantic Policy Congress of First Nations Chiefs Secretariat, the Assembly of First Nations (AFN), the Aboriginal Aquaculture Association, the British Columbia First Nations Fisheries Council and the Native Brotherhood of British Columbia, the forum this year will focus on economic development, according to a release from the Chiefs Secretariat.
"Together, we can improve the future economic success of the Aboriginal Peoples in the fisheries sector,” said John G. Paul, executive director of the Atlantic Policy Congress of First Nations Chiefs Secretariat. “Collectively, we can strengthen skills in marketing, product and market readiness while creating opportunities for economic development in the aboriginal communities. This event is designed to promote partnerships and collaboration between aboriginal peoples and communities, federal and provincial governments and industry as a way towards a more economically prosperous, diverse and sustainable fisheries for aboriginal people."
A major focus will be on best practices in fisheries, and the forum will be attended by the Fisheries Council of Canada and the Canadian Council of Professional Fish Harvesters. There will be an emphasis on commercial fisheries, aquaculture, seafood marketing and product development and recreational fishing activities, the group said.
"Our government supports Aboriginal participation in a prosperous and sustainable fisheries sector," said Gail Shea, minister of Fisheries & Oceans Canada, in a statement. "This forum can help realize this goal by ensuring that Aboriginal fisheries practitioners have the right knowledge and tools to succeed in this challenging and competitive industry."