Stephen Harper

‘Unprecedented opportunity’ in resource development, prime minister tells First Nations

Resource development projects offer First Nations “an unprecedented opportunity” to gain economic benefits and resolve social issues in their communities, Prime Minister Stephen Harper said during an informal discussion at the Vancouver Board of Trade Monday. Harper, in response to questions from board of trade CEO Iain Black, vowed that his government would not approve pipeline projects “unless they meet the highest standards of environmental protection.” Ottawa will also live up to its constitutional obligation to consult with First Nations on resource development, he said. However, the prime minister also urged aboriginal communities to consider more than issues of rights and title when addressing development projects.

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