Innu Council of Pessamit and Quebec Government sign historic framework agreement

2 minute read
15 February 2024

On February 15, 2024, the Innu Council of Pessamit and the government of Quebec signed a new economic framework agreement which represents a major step forward in relations between the two nations. The Premier of Quebec, Mr. François Legault, made the announcement in the company of the Chief of Pessamit, Ms. Marielle  Vachon, and the Minister responsible for Relations with First Nations and Inuit, Mr. Ian Lafrenière and the President and CEO of Hydro-Québec, Mr. Michael Sabia.

The framework agreement outlines the objectives and parameters that will guide subsequent negotiations with a view to concluding a final nation-to-nation agreement. It will promote collaboration and predictability regarding the future development of the territory and the natural resources found there.

Among other provisions in the agreement, the Quebec government has agreed to make a payment of $45 million, as a symbolic gesture, to the Innu Council of Pessamit. This amount will essentially help promote the economic and social development of the community of Pessamit, and is independent of the commitments set out in the framework agreement.

The signing of a mutually beneficial framework agreement promotes a constructive and cooperative dialogue between stakeholders. They are motivated to continue discussions on the various priority subjects provided for in the framework agreement, including solutions concerning the management of the Manicouagan reservoir and commitments concerning wind power development.

Pessamit is a First Nations reserve and Innu community located on the north shore of the Saint Lawrence river, about 50 km from the city of Baie-Comeau.

Marie-Christine Gagnon advised the Innu Council of Pessamit on the negotiation of this agreement with the collaboration of Charles Daviault and Catherine Ouellet.

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