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Thursday, March 31, 2016

March 31, 2016

 

For Immediate Release

 

 

 

How Much Funding is in the Federal 2016 Budget

 

for the CETA Fisheries Fund?

 

 

 

Keith Hutchings, Intergovernmental Affairs Critic for the Official Opposition, is asking how much funding the Trudeau government has allocated in the 2016 budget for the federal share of the fisheries fund that Newfoundland and Labrador was promised as a condition of supporting the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).

 

 

 

“Our province agreed to give up minimum processing requirements under CETA to access the largest seafood market in the world tariff-free almost immediately, and as well agreed to cost-share a $400 million fisheries investment program for ‘industry development and renewal’ so we could meet the opportunities of new markets and adjust and grow our fisheries for the future,” said Hutchings. “As our fishery grows and transitions into other species, especially related to a return of our cod stocks, this fund would allow us to maximize our opportunities.”

 

 

 

“In December 2014, Liberal leader Justin Trudeau wrote to then-Premier Davis, recognizing the promise that the Harper government had made to us and saying ‘that promise should be honoured’. Now that Mr. Trudeau is Prime Minister, we expect him to honour his December 2014 letter commitment to execute the federal government's share of the fishing ‘industry development and renewal’ fund under its original five pillars," said Hutchings.

 

 

 

"Premier Ball and the Fisheries Minister have been absent from advocating for the fund. ‎ In fact, in answers to questions in the House of Assembly, the Premier suggested his government is 'negotiating' the fisheries fund, which seems out of touch with the reality that the bilateral discussions with provinces and territories are over, as the legal text of CETA is being completed. The province agreed to support the federal government's final agreement with the EU under a large group of conditions, including immediate access for 98 per cent of Newfoundland and Labrador seafood to the EU, a shared $400 million fisheries fund and other items. What is our current Premier and government negotiating?

 

"Simple question: Has Newfoundland and Labrador's support for Canada's agreement with the EU been changed? The Premier did not answer this question in House of Assembly. Where is the $280 million in the 2016 federal budget?

 

 

 

“CETA implementation is near, and the time to prepare is now. So how much funding in total has the federal government allocated in this year’s budget to finance our province’s fisheries development and renewal fund?” Hutchings asks.

 

 

 

-30-

 

 

 

Media Contact:

 

Heather MacLean, Director of Communications,

 

Office of the Official Opposition (709) 729 6105, heathermaclean@gov.nl.ca

 

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