Province Decides to Fund Fish Plant

Thursday, December 02, 2004 at 15:14



The provincial government has granted the Saskatchewan Commercial Fisheries Co-operative $350,000 in start-up money for the proposed fish processing plant in Prince Albert.


Up until now, the provincial government had held back its support.


However, this morning, Northern Affairs minister Buckley Belanger stated the NDP is now satisfied the plant is a good investment for both the province and taxpayers. Belanger didn’t explain why the province had a change of heart.


The departments of Northern Affairs and Industry and Resources are each putting up $175,000 towards the project.


However, it comes with the condition that the co-op secure the full financing for the plant.


Co-op president John Carriere doesn’t feel the conditonal approval will be a problem.


He says all of the money they¹ve raised so far is conditional — and he expects this morning’s announcement to further bolster the confidence of the lenders that have come on board and the ones they still need to approach.


However, Carriere stresses the need for those fishers who haven’t come through with their share money to do so promptly.


As well, business consultant Merle Hewison says another big task left to the co-op is the negotiation of a fair business arrangement with the Freshwater Fish Marketing Corporation.


He says that bit of business will likely have to be taken care of before the plant is finally given the green light.