OTTAWA, ONTARIO (April 1, 2019) — The Minister of Intergovernmental and Northern Affairs and Internal Trade, Dominic LeBlanc, issued the following statement today:
“Twenty years ago today, the territory of Nunavut was established. Covering over one fifth of Canada’s land mass, the creation of the most northerly territory of the country fulfilled a long-standing desire for Inuit in the eastern Arctic for greater control over their land and their future.
The great beauty and rich economic potential of the North is widely recognized. By investing in the North and its people we can support Nunavummiut in capitalizing on opportunities and enhancing the quality of life in the vast northern landscape.
The formation of the territory of Nunavut was the first major change to the Canadian map since the incorporation of the province of Newfoundland and Labrador in 1949. As Canada’s 25th Governor General, my father had the honour of issuing the royal proclamation that created Nunavut in 1999. I remember him telling me how proud he was to have been a part of that historic occasion.
In 2017, Nunavut’s shield, part of the territory’s coat of arms designed by Inuk artist Andrew Qappikwere, along with the territorial flower were added to the Centennial Flame. This important addition completed the iconic monument as it was re-lit on Parliament Hill during Canada’s sesquicentennial.
Today, on this important anniversary, we celebrate the invaluable contribution that Nunavummiut have made to the social, cultural and economic development of our country and look forward to the promise of a bright future ahead.