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Fisheries and Aquaculture
July 22, 2010

Minister Sees Firsthand the Extensive Growth and Opportunity
in Coast of Bays Region

The Honourable Clyde Jackman, Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture, completed a visit this week to the Coast of Bays Region on the south coast of Newfoundland. "It was certainly enlightening to visit the largest aquaculture producing region in the province," said the minister. "It is amazing to see what a positive impact the growth in this industry has had on the Coast of Bays Region. There is evidence of development everywhere and you can see the positive spin-off effects from the growth that is taking place in the aquaculture industry."

While in the region, the minister visited aquaculture infrastructure and met with key stakeholders in the province's fishing and aquaculture industries. He visited St. Alban's, Gaultois, Harbour Breton, Hermitage, Milltown and Pool's Cove.

"I had a very busy agenda during my time in the Coast of Bays Region because there is simply so much development to see and so many stakeholders to meet with," said Minister Jackman. "This is clearly an area of the province where our fishing and aquaculture industries are alive and well. It is important to continue to maintain communication between the two industries as they grow side by side. This is critical to the continued development of both industries."

On the first day, Minister Jackman visited the site of the new $8.8 million Centre for Aquaculture Health and Development that is currently being constructed by the Provincial Government in St. Alban's.

"I was pleased to see that the construction of the Centre for Aquaculture Health and Development is progressing so well," said Minister Jackman. "This centre is a key part of our government's plan for the future growth of the aquaculture industry in the province. It will ensure the health and bio-security of our aquaculture products well into the future."

While in Hermitage, the minister visited the new wharf that is being built in the town by the Provincial Government. Funding of $10 million has been allocated to construct biosecure aquaculture wharves in the Coast of Bays Region. 

"Our new wharves infrastructure will enable the aquaculture industry to develop in a healthy and biosecure manner that will benefit the industry, region and province as a whole," said Minister Jackman. "The construction is coming along very well and having dedicated aquaculture wharves should be of benefit to all coastal infrastructure user groups, including fish harvesters and producers."

Also while in Hermitage the minister met with municipal leaders and plant workers from both Hermitage and Seal Cove. He toured Newfoundland Aqua Services operations and then moved on to Pool's Cove where he did a tour of the Northern Harvest Sea Farms aquaculture sites.

"I am extremely proud to highlight our successes to Minister Jackman and our government," said Tracey Perry, Member of the House of Assembly for Fortune Bay-Cape La Hune District. "As a young person living in rural Newfoundland myself, I feel the excitement and energy throughout the region. Under the leadership of the Williams Government since 2003, the support for expansion and investment attraction has been tremendous and is yielding solid results that will ensure a long-term sustainable future for us here in the Coast of Bays region."

Minister Jackman also toured the aquaculture hatchery in St. Alban's and visited Gaultois where he met with the town council and Gaultois Investment Corporation. He then moved on to Harbour Breton where he met with the town council.

"The seafood processing plant in Harbour Breton is doing extremely well," said Minister Jackman. "In fact, it is now seeing some of its highest levels of production ever, as a result of the growth in aquaculture. Only a few years ago the outlook for this area was very bleak indeed. However, the outlook has improved tremendously as a result of the considerable investment on the part of the Williams Government, which has attracted further private sector investment.

"Our government has done a lot of work to foster the growth and development of the province's aquaculture industry," said Minister Jackman. "Clearly we are reaping the rewards of our investment. We are also working very hard to ensure there are effective working relationships between industry, the communities and other stakeholders as this growth takes place. It was an extremely worthwhile visit and I plan to return again in the future."

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Media contacts:

Lori Lee Oates
Director of Communications
Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture
709-729-3733, 690-8403
Donna Ivey
Communications Manager
Government Members Office
709-729-0898, 697-1424 

2010 07 22                                                     10:35 a.m.

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