August 21, 2018
Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment Wally Schumann congratulated Diavik Diamond Mine on the official opening of their A21 pipe at the mine site yesterday. He highlighted what the project means for the Northwest Territories economy and recognized Diavik's contributions to the north. Below are his full remarks.
Check Against Delivery.
Good afternoon and welcome to everyone who has travelled to be here this afternoon to celebrate the opening of the A21.
I am pleased to be here today representing the Government of the Northwest Territories and the Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment.
Premier McLeod wanted to be here this afternoon but was unable to attend as he is currently meeting with Dominic LeBlanc, the new Minister of Northern Development.
Minister LeBlanc is new to this role but he brings with him a high degree of interest in the north and the issues that we face. He is also eager to work with and support us as we advocate for continued northern development – an issue that is of great importance to us.
I find it fitting that the Premier is meeting with the Minister today as we are here celebrating the development and hard work of A21 – a project that will ensure the continuation of existing production levels at Diavik and thus contribute to the economic prosperity for the NWT.
The Premier has asked that I pass on his regrets for not being here but also his congratulations for this milestone.
The story of Diavik diamond mine is shared by countless Northerners who have been part of it since the beginning.
Stretching back to the early 1990s, Northerners have been part of the exploration, construction and operation of the mine.
To date, over 100 million carats have been produced from this mine, which has meant the creation of thousands of northern jobs, and the development of supporting industries and businesses that have strengthened and shared the NWT economy.
Throughout its life, Diavik has recognized and appreciated the role that Northerners have played in achieving its success.
Today’s event marking the opening of A21 is the perfect example this; YKDFN and the Tlicho Drummers are with us today, as well as many of their beneficiaries and employees whose families and communities have benefitted from the training, jobs and opportunities that this mine has made possible.
Generations of Northerners have benefited from the generosity of our diamond mines. Our mining partners sponsor school, community and sporting events and provide training and post-secondary support to students and adults looking to enter the workforce.
Many northerners can point to the investment from diamond mines to our residents as having helped shape their careers and allowed them to stay and raise their families in the territory.
I have been lucky over the years to see time and time again that that no matter what phase of development our diamond mines are in that their continued commitment to the North, to its people, and to offering opportunities to our communities and businesses has remained strong.
I want to thank Diavik for their part in contributing to this legacy and recognize all of the employees – past and present – who have helped get the mine to this important milestone achievement today.
Congratulations on the official opening of A21.