Municipal and Intergovernmental Affairs
December 9, 2014
This statement is being released on behalf of the Honourable Keith Hutchings, Minister of Municipal and Intergovernmental Affairs in response to the statement released earlier today by the Honourable Rob Moore:
In June 2013, our governments agreed that, in exchange for the province agreeing to lift minimum processing requirements (MPRs) for the European Union (EU), the Federal Government and the province would establish a fund that would provide for total expenditure of $400 million based on a 70/30 federal/provincial cost share. In a letter dated June 1, 2013, Minister Ed Fast stated that this fund would “address industry development and renewal as well as worker displacement.” This was confirmed in an exchange of letters between May 29 and June 2, 2013 between Federal Trade Minister Ed Fast and myself.
There was no requirement that the funding would be contingent on demonstrating any negative impact arising from the removal of MPRs. Nor was there any requirement that the $280 million in federal funding would be available to other provinces.
In actual fact, on January 15, 2014, Minister Moore and I, along with officials from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and the Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture met to identify the mechanisms for distribution and administration of the $400 million Industry Investment Fund. Minister Moore indicated that he agreed with the five pillars and there was no mention that the fund was to “compensate for demonstrable losses” or pan Atlantic initiatives.
Our support for CETA was contingent on all commitments made throughout those negotiations including the clear commitments to the Industry Investment Fund negotiated with Minister Ed Fast on behalf of the Government of Canada.
All correspondence to date documenting the negotiation of the fund has been tabled in the House of Assembly today.
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Director of Communications
Department of Municipal and Intergovernmental Affairs
2014 12 09 7:15 p.m.