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Cablegate: Consul General Attends Arctic Nunavut Trade Show, May 10-12

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 QUEBEC 000109

SIPDIS

EB/CBA DENNIS WINSTEAD

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: BBSR ECON ETRD EINV EIND SENV PBTS CA
SUBJECT: CONSUL GENERAL ATTENDS ARCTIC NUNAVUT TRADE SHOW, MAY 10-12

1. Summary: Quebec City Consul General Friedman, whose
consular district includes the Canadian Arctic Territory of
Nunavut, attended the annual Nunavut trade show in Iqaluit, May
10-12. Over the course of the trade show, she discussed with
Nunavut businesses as well as GOC and GON officials investment
and partnering opportunities in Nunavut for U.S. companies.
Nunavut interlocutors singled out the following sectors as ripe
for U.S. investment in Nunavut: Cold weather testing for U.S.
manufacturers (aerospace, automotive, apparel and defense);
tourism; mineral and petroleum resource development; and
alternative energy r&d. Trade show participants and GON
Ministers were enthusiastic about the results of Nunavut's trade
and cultural mission to Boston last fall. GON Trade and
Economic Development (TED) Minister Simailak also commented on
the negative impact of the U.S. Marine Mammal Protection Act
(MMPA) on the Nunavut economy and stressed the need to maintain
the BSE exemption for Nunavut caribou and musk ox. Reftel
reports on CG's meeting with ICC President Sheila Watt-Cloutier.
End summary.
2. Thanks to BFIF funding, Quebec City CG was able to attend the
2005 Nunavut trade show in Iqaluit, May 10-12. That event
brought together ninety-seven exhibitors from communities
throughout the Canadian arctic and over a thousand visitors
(Iqaluit's population is estimated at six thousand).
Conferences held during the trade show focused on northern
development; procurement strategies for aboriginal businesses;
and GON fishing, mining and tourism strategies. CG took the
opportunity to articulate U.S. interest in the region, draw
attention to our Virtual Presence Post for Nunavut
(www.nunavut.usvpp.gov ), and
hand out Mission Canada Foreign Commercial Service brochures.
3. In meetings on the margin of the trade show, CG discussed
with various senior officials possible partnering and investment
opportunities in Nunavut for U.S. businesses. GON TED Minister
Simailak told CG that opportunities exist for US tourism
facility operators to partner with Inuit and Nunavut businesses
in developing infrastructure and capacity catering to the US
tourism market. He cited eco/adventure tourism, sport hunts,
arctic sport fishing and cruise ships.

4. Both the TED minister and Education and Technology Minister
Ed Picco stressed their desire to work with U.S. companies
interested in cold weather testing in the aerospace, automotive,
apparel and defense technology sectors. While they acknowledged
that competition exists with other Canadian arctic regions,
Nunavut officials believe that the Iqaluit airstrip, built by
the U.S. military, might attract the U.S. aerospace giants such
as Pratt and Whitney to extend their cold weather testing to
Nunavut. Minister Simailak also mentioned the desire to see
more U.S. mineral and petroleum resource investment but he did
not specify a given site (and we understand that Canadian
companies are well-along in Nunavut mineral exploration).

Trade Mission to Boston
------------------------------
5. Minister Simailak said the GON was particularly pleased with
the results of its trade mission to Boston, which resulted in
deeper collaboration between Nunavut fisheries and Legal
Seafood, Inc. Legal Seafood has basically told Nunavut that it
will take whatever the region can deliver in terms of fresh
arctic char. Cambridge Bay alone received another two thousand
standing orders for its fisheries products in 2005.

Northwest Passage
----------------------
6. GON officials are eager to explore with U.S. officials the
impact and opportunities
of an eventual opening of the Northwest Passage. Potential
subjects worth addressing,
we were told, include environmental impact assessments;
developing international access
and usage policies and regulations; ensuring that the rights and
interest of Inuit and
Nunavut inhabitants are respected; and the potential for
economic spin offs. The GON
favors creating a multilateral working group that would include
Government agencies
and stakeholders.

Miscellaneous
-----------------
7. Minister Simailak told CG that the US Marine Mammal
Protection Act remains a significant trade barrier with direct
negative impacts on Nunavut sport hunts and on Nunavut's ability
to export of marine mammal products derived from sustainable,
subsistence use of Nunavut marine mammals. Separately, he
stressed the importance to Nunavut of the BSE exemption for
Nunavut Caribou and Musk ox, noting that the U.S. market
represents twenty-five percent of Nunavut's total Caribou
exports.

BFIF Funding Status
-------------------------
8. Post spent US$2511.26 from a total US$2800 allocated this
period.

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