Canada is investing $33 million in BC fishing harbours. Image: Fisheries and Oceans

Canada’s Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Jonathan Wilkinson and Steveston-Richmond East Member of Parliament Joe Peschisolido have confirmed that the government has invested C$33 million in in 35 small craft harbours across British Columbia between 2016 and 2020 to ensure coastal communities can continue to create jobs, and local economies can thrive. This investment is in addition to the ongoing Small Craft Harbour Program operational budget.

‘The Government of Canada is making unprecedented investments to build communities in the 21st century. Today, we are announcing investments in 35 Small Craft Harbours in British Columbia’ Jonathan Wilkinson said.

‘These investments are supporting coastal communities and the fishing industry – a key economic sector that helps support these communities across the country. Investments that help improve communities are a priority for Canadians. When the government invests in the community, Canadians and the Canadian economy benefit.’

He commented that keeping harbours safe, open and in good repair is essential to coastal communities remaining competitive and that with 44,000 Canadians employed in the commercial fishing sector, including more than 5200 in British Columbia, it is important that this industry is sustained.

He also highlighted the removal of ten vessels from small craft harbours in British Columbia as part of the Ocean Protection Plan’s Abandoned and Wrecked Vessels Removal Program, several of which are currently being disposed of in Port Edward.

‘Today’s investment will mean stronger coastal communities in our province. Investing in local small craft harbours helps not just the commercial fishing industry, but the communities in British Columbia as a whole,’ Joe Peschisolido said.

‘The work carried out will renew and maintain the infrastructure that is essential to the region, and stimulate job opportunities that will benefit fish harvesters and support our local communities.’