Premier Floyd Roland spoke to attendees at the 10th Inuvik Petroleum Show last Wednesday, expressing that cooperation and unity of Northern leaders is required for the development of Northern resources.
The show took place from June 22 – 24, and brings delegates from across Canada together to discuss the North’s petroleum potential.
“With our huge resource potential, the NWT continues to be well positioned to take advantage of substantial investment and economic activity,” said Roland in his address. “However, while the authority and control over natural resources have enabled provinces like Alberta and Saskatchewan to capitalize on their resource wealth, we in the NWT do not yet have that advantage.”
He introduced three key issues that will determine the NWT’s short term success.
First, the Industry’s will to commit, secondly the federal Government’s will to support Northern development and lastly, the will of Northerners and governments to work together.
“We need to speak with a single message – and convey a unity that reflects the values and goals we all strive for in the NWT,” said Roland.
He referenced the Mackenzie Gas Pipeline, saying that this project must be something the NWT wants for itself.
“It will depend on our collective will and ability to collaborate in the interest of a greater good,” he said.
“Many great things have been accomplished from the simple philosophy on which the success of this show has been built: the importance or working for the North, with the North, and in the North.”
Industry Minister Bob McLeod was also present for the Petroleum show, and believes the event was a success.
“I think the show went quite well,” he said. “I think that everybody is getting very anxious about getting a commitment for the MacKenzie Pipeline.”
But he said the government’s attitude towards drilling and furthering the oil and gas manufacturing in the North is a positive but cautious one.
“We support drilling but not at any cost,” he said. “We put forward the case that we needed more federal support and infrastructure.”