Canada providing additional funding to support essential air services for remote communities in Saskatchewan

From: Transport Canada

The global COVID-19 pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for Northern and remote communities which depend on supply chains for the delivery of essential goods and services. As the pandemic evolves, the Government of Canada continues to work with partners, including provincial and territorial governments, Indigenous communities and the air industry, to address the unique needs of these communities.

Today, the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, the Minister and Special Representative for the Prairies, the Honourable Jim Carr, and the Minister of Highways for the Government of Saskatchewan, the Honourable Fred Bradshaw, announced that the Government of Canada is providing an additional $1.167 million to the Government of Saskatchewan to continue the support of essential air services for remote communities in Saskatchewan.

The funding announced today is in addition to the $1.592 million provided to the Government of Saskatchewan in 2020, to maintain essential air services to remote communities.

This financial contribution will help maintain minimum levels of air transportation services to remote communities in Saskatchewan to ensure continued access to essential goods and services, including community resupply of food and medical supplies.

The Governments of Canada and Saskatchewan will continue to collaborate to ensure essential transportation and supply chains for northern and remote communities are protected for the health, safety and well-being of all Canadians.

Quotes

“Our government understands the importance of reliable air services in sustaining the social and economic well-being of our northern and remote communities. This investment will ensure that, as we work towards recovery and travel restart post pandemic, people living and working in remote Saskatchewan communities will continue to have access to air services for delivery of essential goods and services and for essential travel between communities in Saskatchewan. We are pleased to be working with our territorial and Indigenous partners and the air industry to support communities as we start to build back better.”

The Honourable Omar Alghabra

Minister of Transport

“Saskatchewan’s remote airports are important to residents and businesses alike, many of whom depend on them not only for personal travel and community resupply, but also for access to routine and emergency medical care in larger centres. This financial support will ensure that, as Canada works towards recovery and travel restart post pandemic, the unique and immediate needs of these remote Saskatchewan communities will continue to be met.”

The Honourable Jim Carr

Minister and Special Representative for the Prairies

“The dual efforts of fighting COVID-19 and ensuring our economy recovers from the pandemic must be made in every corner of the province. We are very grateful that the Government of Canada recognizes the need for reliable air travel to Saskatchewan’s North to achieve these goals, and that it continues to invest in this crucial area of support for our remote communities.”

The Honourable Fred Bradshaw

Minister of Highways

Government of Saskatchewan

Quick facts

  • Under the funding agreements for the Remote Air Services Program, a fixed amount of funding is allocated to each province or territory that has remote communities. Provinces and territories are responsible for allocating the funding to specific air carriers.

  • Remote communities are those that rely on air service as the only practical year-round mode of transportation.

  • There are five communities with airports or aerodromes in Saskatchewan which are considered remote: Stony Rapids, Fond-du-Lac, Uranium City, Wollaston Lake and Camsell Portage.

  • Some communities may have limited access to seasonal ice roads or long and unreliable gravel roads.

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