Minister Sajjan celebrates Economic Development Week and announces over $3.1 million for British Columbians

News release

Image of two people with backpacks hiking in the forest.  Text reads: Minister Sajjan celebrates Economic Development Week and announces over $3.1 million for British Columbians

The Government of Canada is making investments in British Columbia to revitalize community spaces, attract visitors, and grow prosperity across the province

May 24, 2023 – Pitt Meadows, British Columbia – PacifiCan

From coast to coast to coast, Canada has industry-leading innovation, world-class destinations and thriving communities. The Government of Canada is supporting economic growth that will help Canadian businesses and communities thrive now and for years to come.

To mark Canada’s first Economic Development Week, the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada (PacifiCan), announced over $3.1 million in PacifiCan funding for nine projects across British Columbia. This includes $1,763,439 for four projects funded through the Canada Community Revitalization Fund, $1,014,012 for three projects funded through the Tourism Relief Fund, and one project through each of the Regional Innovation Ecosystems and Community Economic Development and Diversification programs.

The Government of Canada is committed to building prosperity and creating opportunities and conditions for continued economic growth for everyone, including Indigenous communities across B.C.  Four of the projects announced today will support Indigenous tourism. For example, the Katzie First Nation will receive $682,500 to design and upgrade the Grant Narrows Marina in Pitt Meadows, a transportation hub for tourists who are canoeing, exploring nature or visiting a local wilderness lodge. Revitalizing the marina will help create and maintain local jobs, attract new and returning visitors, help local businesses grow, and develop future tourism opportunities. Similarly, the Cheam First Nation will receive $669,619 to renovate the Cheam Longhouse in Rosedale, a focal point in the community. The renovations will help the Cheam First Nation accommodate seasonal faith-based ceremonies, cultural and educational workshops, and meetings.

Projects like these help communities and businesses across British Columbia welcome visitors from near and far, improve community wellness, create jobs, and grow the local economy. Communities across the province will benefit from today’s announcement, including Anmore, Salt Spring Island, Agassiz and Rosedale.

For the full list of projects, please see backgrounder here.

This Economic Development Week, the many investments announced by the regional development agencies will strengthen our communities, create jobs, improve quality of life and lay the groundwork for a strong economic future — for all Canadians. 


“During Economic Development Week, we celebrate our vibrant businesses and communities. The investments announced today demonstrate the Government of Canada’s commitment to supporting economic development across British Columbia. Investing in innovation, strong communities and the return of sectors like tourism will help British Columbians today and well into the future.”
- The Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada

“It’s time for Canada’s tourism sector to push past reviving all the way to thriving. Our government’s investments in tourism over the last three years focused on sustaining and rebuilding the tourism ecosystem, promoting what we have and designing for the future. A fully recovered and robust tourism sector is key to our government’s ongoing work to build an economy that works for everyone. Together, we can make sure that Canada’s tourism sector is something that visitors and Canadians alike will celebrate and enjoy for generations to come.”
- The Honourable Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance

“Katzie First Nation is very pleased to receive support from the Government of Canada. The funding will support our Nation and its economic development arm to help enhance and re-develop the PAWMA / Grant Narrows boat launch. We are equally pleased to announce that we recently signed a long-term lease with the Province of BC to manage the area. This project will support the Nation in developing a more self-sufficient economy, support current and future tourism related activities within the Upper Pitt, and advance the process of reconciliation.”
- Chief Grace George, Katzie First Nation

Quick facts

  • PacifiCan is the federal economic development agency dedicated to British Columbians. PacifiCan works with partners who are building innovative businesses, creating quality jobs, and supporting inclusive growth throughout our province.

  • PacifiCan opened offices in Kelowna, Cranbrook, Victoria, Campbell River, Prince George, Prince Rupert and Fort St. John in 2022. These offices serve businesses and communities, including Indigenous communities, across the province. PacifiCan will establish its headquarters in Surrey, British Columbia.

  • The Canada Community Revitalization Fund provides $500 million over two years to help communities across Canada build and improve infrastructure, making public spaces safer, greener and more accessible. PacifiCan has already invested over $29 million in over 80 projects across B.C.

  • The Tourism Relief Fund provides $500 million over two years to help tourism businesses and organizations across Canada with adapting their operations to meet public health requirements, while investing in products and services to facilitate future growth. PacifiCan has already invested over $26 million in 90 organizations across B.C.

  • The Regional Innovation Ecosystem Program aims to grow and nurture priority sectors across British Columbia, building an inclusive innovation ecosystem that allows those sectors to innovate and compete globally.

  • The Community Economic Development and Diversification program supports economic development initiatives that contribute to the economic growth and diversification of communities across British Columbia. Through this program, PacifiCan helps communities respond to economic development opportunities and adjust to changing and challenging economic circumstances.

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Haley Hodgson
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of International Development and Pacific Economic Development Agency (PacifiCan)

Jillian Glover
Communications Manager

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