The Government of Canada invests in Small Craft Harbours on the Avalon Peninsula of Newfoundland and Labrador

News release

August 6, 2021

St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador - Five communities on the Avalon Peninsula are welcoming a significant federal investment that will benefit the local economy and community.

Coastal communities across Canada are supported by small craft harbours that provide the commercial fishing industry with safe access to waterways. With approximately 45,000 Canadians employed in the fishing sector, the Government of Canada is making investments to renew its network of small craft harbours and work with municipalities and other stakeholders to ensure this important infrastructure can enhance local communities.

The Honourable Seamus O’Regan Jr., Minister of Natural Resources and Member of Parliament for St. John’s South—Mount Pearl on behalf of the Honourable Bernadette Jordan, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, announced that the Government of Canada is investing approximately $12 million to enhance the marine infrastructure in small craft harbours on the Avalon Peninsula.

The investment will support the following Small Craft Harbour infrastructure projects which will renew and maintain the infrastructure that is essential to the region, but also stimulate job opportunities that will benefit both fish harvesters and local communities:

  • Removal of deteriorated slipway and construction of new retaining cribs in Petty Harbour;
  • Construction of floating docks in Bay Bulls;
  • Construction of a finger pier to expand the St. John’s (Prosser Rock) small boat basin;
  • Advanced planning for the construction of a breakwater in Witless Bay; and
  • Reconstruction of wharves that experienced storm damage in 2020 in St. Philip’s.


“Small craft harbours are the heart of Canada’s coastal communities. They’re places of gathering, hubs of recreation and industry, and they’re essential to Canada’s growing blue economy. That’s why our government is investing $300 million to make our harbours greener, safer, and more efficient. We’ll always support the women and men of our fisheries, tourism sectors, and construction industries, and the coastal and rural communities that depend on Canada’s small craft harbours.”

The Honourable Bernadette Jordan, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard 

“Canada’s oceans, the bounty in our waters, and the riches underneath them have created prosperity for our Province. We’re investing in local fish harvesters by improving local harbour infrastructure across Canada, including right here on the Avalon Peninsula. This will create jobs and provide continued prosperity for our community.”

The Honourable Seamus O’Regan Jr., Minister of Natural Resources and Member of Parliament for St. John’s South—Mount Pearl

Quick facts

  • In Budget 2021-2022, the Government of Canada committed an additional $300 million to be invested over two years for the renewal of Canada’s network of small craft harbours.

  • Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) keeps harbours critical to the commercial fishing industry open and in good repair.

  • DFO supports 973 harbours across Canada with more than 5000 volunteers from harbour authorities.

  • Harbour restoration projects are undertaken in cooperation with the local harbour authorities that manage and operate facilities for local users.

  • The Small Craft Harbour Program budget for 2021-2022 is approximately $90 million; of this amount, approximately $70 million will be directly invested in projects for repairs, maintenance, construction and dredging at harbours.

  • Canada’s blue economy and its future growth depend on the sustainable use and management of our ocean resources. A Blue Economy Strategy will enable us to protect and revitalize the health of our oceans while taking advantage of emerging economic growth opportunities throughout ocean sectors.

Associated links


Olivia McMakin
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard

Media Relations
Fisheries and Oceans Canada

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