Maximizing Opportunities for Economic Growth in Rural Canada

News release

Minister Jordan launches Canada’s Rural Economic Development and Connectivity Strategies

New Ross, Nova Scotia, June 27, 2019 — Strong, connected and prosperous rural communities are key to Canada’s culture, social fabric and economic success. Residents of these communities know what they need to thrive, which is why the Honourable Bernadette Jordan, Canada’s Minister of Rural Economic Development, has travelled the country to meet with the people on the ground to hear what really matters to them.  

Today, Minister Jordan shared the results of engagement with rural Canadians and presented Canada’s first Rural Economic Development Strategy and a new Connectivity Strategy, which together reflect the challenges, priorities and opportunities for Rural Canada.

Rural Opportunity, National Prosperity: An Economic Development Strategy for Rural Canada outlines ways to maximize federal investments to improve the quality and resiliency of community infrastructure, create good jobs, support trade and investment, strengthen skills, and welcome newcomers in rural communities. The Strategy sets the stage for stronger collaboration and long-term strategic investments to respond to the specific needs of rural communities, and commits the Government of Canada to adopt a rural perspective when making decisions on federal programs, policies, and initiatives

To that end, high-speed Internet access is essential for rural and remote Canadians to thrive in the digital economy. High-Speed Access for All: Canada’s Connectivity Strategy is the Government’s plan to ensure that all Canadians have access to affordable, reliable, high-speed Internet, no matter where they live. It also commits to improve mobile wireless coverage where Canadians live and work, and along major highways and roads.

Together, these strategies will lay the foundation for a prosperous, competitive and thriving rural Canada where residents have the opportunity to pursue meaningful careers and experience a high quality of life for years to come. 


“Canada’s rural communities play an important role in our country’s social and economic well-being. By working to provide high-speed Internet and greater mobile access to rural Canada, working with our partners and finding ways to maximize federal investments; we will help unlock rural opportunity for all. Together, these strategies will serve as a roadmap for the long-term success and prosperity of rural Canada.”

The Honourable Bernadette Jordan, Minister of Rural Economic Development

Quick facts

  • The Government has proposed an ambitious plan to ensure that every household in Canada, no matter how rural or remote, has access to high-speed Internet and mobile wireless services.

  • Through Budget 2019, the Government has proposed historic investments of up to $6 billion for high-speed connectivity. 

  • Through the Connect to Innovate program, the Government is extending high-speed Internet service to 900 rural and remote communities – of which 190 are Indigenous – with an impact on over 380,000 households. More than the 300 originally anticipated.  Budget 2019 investments will provide an additional top-up to the successful program.

  • Through the $180-billion Investing in Canada infrastructure plan, Canada’s rural and northern communities are benefitting from a renewal of public infrastructure that includes investments in roads, bridges and highways; water treatment systems; cleaner, more affordable sources of electricity; storm-water systems and natural barriers that reduce the risk of flooding brought on by extreme weather events.

    • $2 billion of this funding is earmarked specifically to support infrastructure projects that meet the unique needs of rural and northern communities; and
    • $400 million is being delivered through the Arctic Energy Fund to deliver cleaner, more affordable electricity to residents living in Canada’s territories.

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Émilie Simard
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Rural Economic Development

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