Declaration of rights opens the door to billions in First Nations partnerships

The benefits to First Nations that participate more fully in the B.C. economy will be measured in billions of dollars. A win-win result will create society-wide benefits. A full-day gathering in Vancouver on January 14, 2020 will look at how a new legal landscape will affect this trend.


First Nations leaders and businesspeople will gather in Vancouver on Jan. 14 at the Finding a Path to Shared Prosperity conference to share lessons from an Indigenous economy that is poised to grow exponentially in the next five years, according to a report in The Vancouver Sun. The conference will feature Indigenous entrepreneurs and First Nations engaged in energy, property development, tourism, transportation, aquaculture and other businesses.

Business collaborations have long been a feature of the British Columbia scene, with the BC Chamber of Commerce reporting the existence of nearly 500 First Nations partnerships. 

The Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business projects Canada’s Indigenous economy will grow from $30 billion a year today to $100 billion by 2024, according to the news report. There are about 50,000 Indigenous businesses in Canada, and they are growing at nine times the rate of non-Aboriginal businesses, according to the Council.

The passage of Bill 41 one into British Columbia law enshrines UN principles on Indigenous rights and will be followed in 2020 by the same move at the federal level. 

The Finding the Path conference is the first major gathering where the economic and business impacts of UNDRIP-related legislation are being explored.

Resource Works is among the organizations supporting the event and we encourage anyone interested in these issues to attend the event. Our previous work in this area includes the Homeland Journey video series and report Becoming Partners: A decade of progress in aboriginal-industrial relations in British Columbia.


Event and ticket information


Image: Pole at New Hazelton.

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