The failure to construct a long-sought-after boat dock is damaging Qikiqtarjuaq’s economy and employment opportunities, says Uqqummiut MLA Pauloosie Keyootak.
The lack of marine infrastructure means ships carrying turbot and shrimp are unable to offload their catch in Qikiqtarjuaq. Many of these fishing vessels offload in Greenland or in
Newfoundland instead, said Keyootak.
“These are potential huge sources of income revenue Nunavut could generate but which
instead go to line the pockets of other owners outside of Nunavut,” Keyootak said in the legislative assembly on Tuesday. “There are hardly any employment prospects locally, and many residents have no employment since Qikiqtarjuaq is non-decentralized.”
Economic Development Minister David Akeeagok noted that the federal government didn’t opt to provide financial assistance for Qikiqtarjuaq’s dock despite letters of support from the GN and the Qikiqtaaluk Corporation. Nonetheless, Akeeagok said his department will once again include the project when a new round of funding opens under the Government of Canada’s National Trades Corridor Fund.
“I have faith that the government will approve more projects in the future, and that they will set aside capital project funding that can be applied towards relevant projects,” the minister said.