Statement by the Prime Minister on his meeting with the central government of Tahltan
Prime Minister John Horgan issued the following statement during his trip to Tahltan Territory:
“Over the past two days, I have had the opportunity to meet with leaders from the central government of Tahltan, the Iskut Band and the Tahltan Band. I was joined by Bruce Ralston, Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation, and Nathan Cullen, Minister of Municipal Affairs and MPP for Stikine.
“Together we traveled through Tahltan Territory in northwestern British Columbia, including stops at Dease Lake, Telegraph Creek and Iskut. I am grateful to the Tahltan for hosting me, as the first Prime Minister to visit the region in over 30 years.
“We stopped at schools in Dease Lake and Iskut, where I was able to speak with young people about their communities and their aspirations for the future. I heard from local leaders and industry about the good work being done to bring natural resources to market responsibly and sustainably.
“For thousands of years, the Tahltan have mined obsidian for their families and for trade. Today, mining continues to play an important role in the local economy, providing nearly 3,000 direct jobs. and indirect and attracting approximately $1.8 billion in international investment from July 2018 to March 2021. The natural abundance of minerals in Tahltan Territory creates good local jobs, supports communities, and helps propel Tahltan’s economy. British Columbia.
“Earlier this week, our government took a historic step in partnership with the central government of Tahltan. We entered into the first consent-based decision-making agreement under the Indigenous Peoples Bill of Rights Act. We recognize the inherent rights of the Tahltan to make decisions about their land and to act as stewards, as they have done since time immemorial.
“The Eskay Creek project will be the first of its kind to meet the consent standards set out in Section 7 of the Declaration Act for an environmental assessment. It represents a new chapter in the long and storied history of mining and natural resource development in Tahltan territory.
“The impact of this agreement extends well beyond northwestern British Columbia. When investors turn to British Columbia, they will see a jurisdiction where shared decision-making with Indigenous peoples is essential to predictable and sustainable development.
“The Tahltan Nation is a strong partner. Together, we are demonstrating reconciliation in action with real benefits for the Tahltan Nation and all British Columbians.