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First Nations forestry program receives funds

Jan. 25, 2011, Victoria – The First Nations Forest Sector Technical Support Program in British Columbia is receiving $1.2 million in federal-provincial funding.


January 25, 2011
By Ministry of Forests Mines and Lands

Jan. 25, 2011, Victoria – The First Nations
Forest Sector Technical Support Program in British Columbia is receiving $1.2 million in
federal-provincial funding. The program will help First Nations groups develop
new and existing forest-related businesses. Participants will be provided with
technical advice and hands-on expertise such as best practices in harvesting,
transportation, equipment selection, mill layout, manufacturing, market
intelligence, and market opportunities. “The Technical Support Program directly
addresses several recommendations in the 2009 report by the Working Roundtable
on Forestry, particularly the goal of supporting First Nations in becoming full
partners in forestry,” says Pat Bell, minister of forests, mines, and lands.

Over a two-year period, the Technical
Support Program aims to expand the number of First Nation bands and businesses
involved in forest and wood products industries, as well as increase employment
within First Nation communities. Through the Technical Support Program, First
Nations can strengthen their capacity to operate their forest tenures more
efficiently and become more involved in the manufacture of wood products.
Industry experts with FPInnovations, the world’s largest private,
not-for-profit forest research institute, will supply information and guidance
to First Nations businesses. Staff from FPInnovations will begin administering
the program and deploying industry advisors in January 2011. For more
information, contact the program manager, Dave McRae of FPInnovations,
at dave.mcrae@fpinnovations.ca.

“The First Nations Forest Sector Technical
Support Program is the type of program needed by First Nations and First Nation
entrepreneurs interested in developing or expanding a forest and wood products
business,” says Chief Bill Williams, president of the First Nations Forestry
Council. “This program will help ensure we build successful First Nation forest
businesses and sustainable communities.”

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