Canada, Nunavut and Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. reach a significant milestone towards devolution in Nunavut with signing of an Agreement-in-Principle

News release

August 15, 2019 — Iqaluit, NU — Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada

The Government of Canada, the Government of Nunavut (GN) and Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated (NTI) have taken an important step on the road to devolution in Nunavut today with the signing of an Agreement-in-Principle (AIP).

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, the Honourable Joe Savikataaq, Premier of Nunavut, and Aluki Kotierk, President of NTI, came together in Iqaluit today to sign the Nunavut Devolution AIP.

The AIP is a significant milestone in placing decision-making power over land and resources into the hands of Nunavut residents, while ensuring that economic and other benefits of resource development in the region are shared with the people of Nunavut.

The next step is a Final Devolution Agreement which is expected within five years.


"The Devolution of responsibilities for managing land and water resources in the North to the people of the North has been a priority of the Government of Canada for some time. With today's signing of the Agreement-in-Principle, the people of Nunavut are one step closer to taking greater control of their lands and resources, and reaping the benefits of responsible, sustainable resource development."

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, M.D., P.C., M.P.
Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations

"Today, we acknowledge the efforts and dedication of those who have worked tirelessly to bring decision-making power to Nunavut. This has been the hope since the creation of our territory, and we are excited to move toward a finalized devolution agreement; one where Nunavummiut control what happens on our lands and waters, and where we benefit directly from those activities. Today's signing of the Agreement-in-Principle is a milestone on this journey of self-reliance and Inuit empowerment."  

The Honourable Joe Savikataaq
Premier of Nunavut

"This paves the way for decisions to be made in Nunavut about development on crown land and for Nunavut Inuit to be trained to work in the fields of land and resource management. NTI worked diligently for the Human Resources Development Strategies. This will see funding early next year for the Government of Nunavut to train Inuit for employment at all levels and ensure Nunavut has the capacity to manage the new responsibilities."

Aluki Kotierk
President, Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated

Quick facts

  • The signing of the AIP is one of the formal steps in the process towards devolution for Nunavut. The AIP sets the stage for negotiations of a Final Devolution Agreement.

  • The AIP contains 14 chapters covering issues such as ownership, management and associated responsibilities of lands, natural resources and assets; educational and employment opportunities for Nunavummiut; and resource royalties for minerals in Nunavut. Processes for transitioning responsibility for resource management are also set out in the AIP.

  • The AIP is the result of many years of negotiations and discussion involving representatives from the Government of Canada, the GN and NTI.

  • The Lands and Resources Devolution Negotiation Protocol (Protocol) was signed in 2008, laying out the jointly agreed upon broad principles for Nunavut devolution. The Protocol was the first formal step in the process towards devolution in Nunavut.

Associated links


For more information, media may contact:

Matthew Dillon-Leitch
Director of Communications
Office of the Honourable Carolyn Bennett,
Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations

Media Relations
Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada

Government of Nunavut
Catriona Macleod
Press Secretary to Premier Savikataaq

Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated
Malaya Mikijuk
Assistant Director, Communications

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