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Petroleum News Canadian - Kakfwi demands revenue
March 2005
Stephen Kakfwi, a former Northwest Territories premier and now chief negotiator for the Sahtu, has been adamant that a C$7 billion pipeline will not be allowed to cross aboriginal land and “face the prospect we will be as poor as we are today.”

He said access to pipeline tax revenues would meet with unanimous approval from the aboriginal leaders.

Kakfwi said aboriginal communities are properly constituted governments who need revenue, not federal hand-outs, for their survival.

“We are landowners and as landowners we also expect revenue,” he said.
The first step in that direction needs a decision by the Canadian government to devolve powers to the Northwest Territories government — a goal Prime Minister Paul Martin has promised to put in place by 2006.

Deputy PM Anne McLellan and Premier Joe Handley said they had made progress on that front as well on May 10, reporting that a draft revenue-sharing agreement is imminent that would allow the Northwest Territories to keep more of the money from development of its resources.
Currently the Northwest Territories keeps only 4 percent; Handley wants that figure to grow ten-fold.

“No jurisdiction would agree to the extraction of its non-renewable resources for 4 cents on the dollar,” Handley said.

“It’s very expensive to do business in the north. We’ve got a very primitive infrastructure.”

McLellan committed to an agreement-in-principle by next month, without disclosing how much the Northwest Territories could expect.

She also said there would be a delay between an agreement-in-principle and a final pact, which Handley hopes will be reached some time in 2006.


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