Government of Canada investment supports tourism industry in Northwest Territories

News release

CanNor makes key investment of nearly $4 million in NWT tourism projects

May 28, 2021 – Yellowknife, Northwest Territories – Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor)

Tourism is a key component of NWT’s economic diversification, but with many travel and public health restrictions still in place, NWT’s tourism industry continues to face challenges on the road to recovery. Throughout the pandemic, tourism businesses in NWT have demonstrated their resilience and adaptability, and support from the Government of Canada is helping the tourism industry to continue preparing for when travel restrictions are lifted.

The Government of Canada remains committed to working with northern businesses and communities to help stimulate the territorial economies and support Northerners.

Federal investment supports five tourism projects in NWT

Today, Michael McLeod, Member of Parliament for the Northwest Territories, on behalf of the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for CanNor, announced an investment of nearly $4 million to support five tourism projects that will contribute to the recovery and growth of the Northwest Territories’ tourism industry.

  • $2,746,601 to support Northwest Territories Tourism in their three-year project to enhance tourism research, marketing and market development by focusing its destination marketing activities on three key areas: research and strategy; domestic marketing and content development; and modernization of their web and digital platforms.
  • $333,600 to support the Town of Hay River’s three-year project to expand community tourism platforms and implement a tourism development plan, which will help the town promote itself as a tourism destination and further develop tourism opportunities.
  • $699,325 to Lutsel K’e Dene Lodges General Partner Inc. to support renovations to Frontier Lodge as well as a new marketing, sales and distribution strategy to take advantage of the economic opportunities related to the creation of the Thaidene Nene National Park Reserve.
  • $99,999 to Canoe North Adventures Ltd. to support their two-year project to establish the Nahanni Canoe Outfitting and Interpretive Centre (NCOIC) in Fort Simpson which will include a display gallery to exhibit works by local artists, as well as an interpretive component to share Indigenous culture and traditions with Canoe North Adventures’ clients through elder and youth story-telling and activities.
  • $79,898 investment in the Tłı̨chǫ Government’s Tourism Infrastructure Development project to create and revitalize tourism infrastructure near Whati by establishing three campsites along the La Martre River and revitalizing the mechanized boat pull where the Marion River meets Marion Lake.

Today’s announcement further demonstrates the Government of Canada’s commitment to help position the NWT tourism industry for a strong recovery, while promoting all of the unique places and experiences the territory has to offer. CanNor’s continued support of the NWT tourism industry contributes to building a stronger and more resilient tourism economy in the North and supports community economic diversification.


“The Government of Canada has been there for the tourism sector since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis and will continue to be there through to our economic reopening and recovery. We are proud to be making key investments to support tourism businesses and organizations as they prepare to welcome visitors from home and abroad to their beautiful communities once it is safe to do so.”

The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for CanNor

“Our tourism operators have shown resilience and resolve over this past year, and I know they’re ready and willing to welcome visitors back as soon as it’s safe to do so. This support, delivered through CanNor, will help make sure NWT tourism operators are able to bounce back from this crisis. I’m looking forward to seeing businesses around the NWT welcome visitors again when restrictions start to lift. People will travel again and today’s investments will help our local tour operators and businesses be ready to greet them.”

Michael McLeod, Member of Parliament, Northwest Territories

“From vast and beautiful landscapes, to unique cultures and events, to vivid displays of aurora, NWT has much to share with Northerners, Canadians and visitors from around the world. By investing in tourism today, we are ensuring that the NWT is ready to welcome back all visitors in the future, and we are helping the sector stay resilient during difficult times.”

The Honourable Larry Bagnell, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages (Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency)

“The support we and our tourism industry members have received through CanNor has been, and continues to be, critical to our marketing efforts and to tourism in the Northwest Territories. CanNor funding provides an important supplement to funding received from the GNWT-ITI – our core funding partner. With the support of CanNor, NWT Tourism is undertaking research and ramping up our domestic marketing and content development. The modernization of web and digital platforms has always been important, but this is especially so now, as future visitors increasingly turn to the web to stay in touch with destinations and research future travel plans. The tactics we have in the works and the work we will undertake when borders open and the time is right to travel will undoubtedly speed the recovery of the tourism industry in the Northwest Territories. CanNor is a valued partner, and we appreciate the support we have received.”

Donna Lee Demarcke, CEO, NWT Tourism

Quick facts

Associated links


Catherine Mounier-Desrochers
Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages

Barbara Abramchuk
Communications Advisor, NWT region

Stay connected

Find more services and information at

Follow CanNor on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

Page details

Date modified: