Huu-ay-aht join Premier’s India Trade Mission

Executive director James Edwards and Councillor John Jack hope to build new business relationships abroad.

Two Huu-ay-aht First Nations representatives are joining the province’s trade mission to India.

HFN Councillor John Jack and executive director James Edwards be joining Premier Christy Clark and Advanced Education Minister Amrik Virk, as well as the Port Alberni Port Authority CEO Zoran Knezevic on a trade mission to explore economic opportunities in the Asia Pacific region.

In a release, Edwards said that “this is an opportunity to be in the same room as some of their biggest potential customers” for the trans-shipment hub and the Steelhead LNG facility, both of which would be built on Huu-ay-aht land at Sarita Bay.

Edwards said that he’s had a positive response from the province regarding the Huu-ay-aht’s initiatives.

“The feedback I’ve heard is that they appreciate [our] innovative approach.”

With Asia’s third largest economy, India is a key emerging business partner for B.C., something that makes the Huu-ay-aht eager to forge new ties and build on already existing ones.

“We’re looking at a few different areas,” said Edwards, adding that they were especially hoping to to find strategic and technical partners looking to develop in the area.

“Lucrative opportunities often come about by making connections with a wide variety of business and government representatives and openly sharing intent and information,” said Jack in a Huu-ay-aht press release, adding that while this mission is focused on the LNG facility and the trans-shipment hub, the Huu-ay-aht have “many resources – forestry, trade, cultural, foods – that could be marketed to India” in the future.

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