Ministers discuss need for cooperation

11 Sep 2012
Front row (L-R): The Honourable Norm Letnick, Minister of Agriculture (British Columbia), the Honourable James Arreak, Minister of Environment (Nunavut), and The Honourable Currie Dixon, Minister of Environment (Yukon); Second row: The Honourable Sterling Belliveau, Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture (Nova Scotia), and Co-chair, the Honourable Keith Ashfield, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans (Canada); Third row: The Honourable Ron MacKinley, Minister of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Rural Development (Prince Edward Island) and the Honourable Michael Olscamp, Minister of Agriculture, Aquaculture, and Fisheries (New Brunswick)

Front row (L-R): The Honourable Norm Letnick, Minister of Agriculture (British Columbia), the Honourable James Arreak, Minister of Environment (Nunavut), and The Honourable Currie Dixon, Minister of Environment (Yukon); Second row: The Honourable Sterling Belliveau, Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture (Nova Scotia), and Co-chair, the Honourable Keith Ashfield, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans (Canada); Third row: The Honourable Ron MacKinley, Minister of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Rural Development (Prince Edward Island) and the Honourable Michael Olscamp, Minister of Agriculture, Aquaculture, and Fisheries (New Brunswick)

Ministers discussed a range of issues such as aquaculture, aquatic invasive species, and protecting Canada’s fisheries at the CCFAM annual meeting last week in Victoria, British Columbia.

The Canadian Council of Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers (CCFAM) meeting was co-chaired by Keith Ashfield, federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, and the British Columbia Ministry of Agriculture.

Representatives from all provinces, territories, and the federal government recognised that cooperation is needed to protect Canadian waters from aquatic invasive species with the goal of preserving the biodiversity of aquatic ecosystems, while avoiding duplication and ensuring alignment among both levels of government.

Representatives also discussed the development of an aquaculture regulatory program that will support sustainable fish and seafood production while ensuring the effective management of aquatic animal health and protection of the environment. This will provide stability and will allow aquaculture continued growth as a contributor to the Canadian economy. Aquaculture currently generates about $2 billion in economic activity, creates good jobs in rural communities and occurs in all provinces and in Yukon.

The Atlantic Council of Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers and representatives also met to discuss matters relevant to Atlantic Canada. Atlantic Ministers discussed the importance of the lobster fishery to Atlantic Canada and agreed to continue discussions aimed at ensuring stability and viability of this important fishery.

At this meeting, Ministers also discussed ongoing science activities such as stock assessment and agreed that these activities are important to both the health of ecosystems and the long-term economic prosperity of the fishing and aquaculture industries.

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