Thunder Bay to hear from Plan Nord Economic Development Experts

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Ring of FireTHUNDER BAY – Business Now – Four individuals from NATIONAL Public Relations who played an important role in northern regional economic development in the Province of Quebec will be in Thunder Bay on Wednesday, January 18 to present an overview of what has become one of the biggest economic, social and environmental projects of this era. The program is slated to get underway at noon at the Slovak Legion and will conclude at 3:30 p.m.

The presentation is jointly sponsored by the Northwestern Ontario Joint Task Force (JTF) on Regional Economic Development Pilot Project, the Northwestern Ontario Associated Chambers of Commerce (NOACC) and the Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association (NOMA).

The Northwestern Ontario JTF was formed in response to an announcement the 2010 Ontario budget regarding “partnering with Sudbury and Thunder Bay to establish pilot economic development planning areas”. The JTF’s mandate is to play a lead role in developing a proposed model and implementation plan for regional economic planning in Northwestern Ontario.

JTF Chair Iain Angus said that the presentation by the group from Northern Quebec is timely. “As we near completion of model and implementation plan and begin to conduct regional outreach to gain feedback, it is important to hear from those who have successfully moved through the process”, said Angus. “The fact that we will be hearing from our neighbours to the east makes it especially relevant”.

Plan Nord will be carried out over a period of 25 years. It will lead to over $80 billion in investments during that time and create or consolidate, on average, 20 000 jobs a year, equivalent to 500,000 person years. Plan Nord will be to the coming decades what La Manicouagan and James Bay were to the 1960s and 1970s.

NATIONAL’s team visiting Thunder Bay consists of:

  • CATHERINE CANO – Managing Partner, Toronto Office, a veteran communications specialist with extensive experience world-wide as a journalist, producer and analyst;
  • BRIAN HAY – Manager, Aboriginal Relation, one of Canada’s most experienced aboriginal affairs consultants;
  • YVAN LOUBIER– Senior Consultant and Economist – Québec, an expert advisor on issues of concern to Quebec and Canada, including regional economic development and social acceptability;
  • RICHARD MAHONEY – Vice President, Government Relations, a frequent commentator on Canadian politics and public policy who specializes in public policy issue management and regulatory affairs.

The NATIONAL team presentation will be followed by a panel discussion led by local experts and round table discussions. Admission is $20 plus HST including lunch. Those interested in registering can go to: www.nwoeconomiczone.ca.

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