News Release - May 10, 1999
NEW FORESTRY PARTNERSHIP IN LA RONGE
An important component of Saskatchewan's forest development plan was
launched today at a community event in La Ronge. Zelensky Brothers
Sawmill and the Lac La Ronge Indian Band announced their plans to
build a new sawmill near the community. Economic and Co-operative
Development Minister Janice MacKinnon and Northern Affairs Minister
Keith Goulet welcomed the announcement of a $15 - 20 million
investment that will create 600 direct and indirect jobs.
"The new mill at La Ronge represents an economic boost for the
community, the north and the province," Goulet said. "By involving
northern companies and communities as full partners in forest
development projects, the government's allocation policies will ensure
that forestry is a vibrant part of the northern economy, creating
business and employment opportunities for northern people."
MacKinnon said, "Under their new licensing agreement, the partners
will be responsible for managing all aspects of their wood supply,
from environmental assessments through harvesting to replanting. This
is a prime example of how we are making better and smarter use of our
forestry resource so that we can create thousands of new jobs and
opportunities while still preserving our precious forests."
The partners have received a conditional allocation of wood from
the former Weyerhaeuser Forest Management Area (FMA) contingent
on the partnership finalizing a community involvement plan,
developing timelines for construction and receiving all necessary
environmental approvals. The wood supply is located in the area
around La Ronge excluding the Nemiebem block and does not extend
north of the Churchill River.
"We are pleased that the province has recognized that the people
who live in the local communities should gain some of the
benefits from the development of the forestry resources," said
Chief Harry Cook of the Lac La Ronge Indian Band.
An important component of the forest development plan is that
environmental sustainability will be the foundation for growth in
the forestry sector. The new Forest Resources Management Act and
regulations which came into effect on April 1, 1999 will ensure
that activities in the forest are sustainable over the long term
and that the health of the ecosystem is protected.
"The people of northern Saskatchewan can be very proud of their
northern leaders and representatives," Brian Zelensky, President
of Zelensky Brothers said. "The work they and the government of
Saskatchewan have done will give northern people local management
of the forest resource and sustainable jobs for the future
The partnership is part of an expansion of the forest industry in
Saskatchewan that will result in the creation of as many as
10,000 direct and indirect jobs over the next three years.
Additional jobs are expected in manufacturing, agri-forestry and
research and development over the next 10 years. There will also
be more than $850 million of private sector investment in
"This project is an expression of confidence in Saskatchewan's
economy by communities and industry," MacKinnon said. "It
reflects our commitment to a full-participation society where all
people can share in the benefits of our economic success."
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For more information, contact:
Economic & Co-operative Development
Phone: (306) 787-1691
Office of Northern Affairs
Phone: (306) 425-4216