Vancouver conference to showcase rising tide of Indigenous ownership in Canada’s economy

Deborah Jaremko Indigenous ownership in Canadian energy is growingNearly 2,000 people are expected to gather at the Vancouver Convention Centre this June to learn about advancing Indigenous leadership in the Canadian economy.

It’s the fourth year for the Indigenous Partnerships Success Showcase (IPSS), an event organizers say has grown rapidly with the rising tide of Indigenous success, especially in the energy sector.

“Every year, hundreds of business executives, government officials and Indigenous leaders gather at IPSS from across Canada because they are inspired by the achievements of Indigenous communities and their partners, and because they want to see how they can achieve similar success alongside their partners,” says Chief Ian Campbell, a hereditary chief and former elected councillor of the Squamish Nation.

For a second year, IPSS is chaired by Chief Campbell. Along with Chief Campbell, IPSS is steered by an Indigenous-led governing council with members from diverse industries across the country, in partnership with B.C.-based advocacy group Resource Works.

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The impact of Indigenous ownership in Canadian energy is growing. The world’s first Indigenous-led LNG project – Cedar LNG, jointly owned by the Haisla Nation and Pembina Pipeline – now has provincial and federal approval.

Last year, 39 Indigenous communities in B.C. and Alberta launched ownership of oil and gas pipelines.

In Alberta, 23 First Nation and Métis communities are now approximately 12 per cent owners of seven Enbridge oil sands pipelines, the largest Indigenous energy transaction ever in North America.

In B.C., 16 Indigenous communities will become 10 per cent owners of the Coastal GasLink pipeline once it is completed in 2023.

Lessons from these partnerships in energy can help inform successful strategies across the Canadian economy, Chief Campbell says.

“The business community can’t afford to miss out on this rising tide of Indigenous success. In fact, in every sector across Canada, there are opportunities for Indigenous communities and the business world to work together to achieve great things.”

This year’s event, to be held June 1-2, will feature discussion of sectors ranging from energy and mining to sustainable seafood, Indigenizing urban buildings, and the digital economy.

Sessions include perspectives of young Indigenous leaders, strategies for capitalizing Indigenous businesses, pathways for economic reconciliation, and a dialogue in the traditional Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) language.

The event is all about shared prosperity, growing out of a conversation that began in 2019 as B.C. became the first jurisdiction in Canada to pass legislation implementing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).

“We’re on the brink of a movement. To us, that movement is defined by partnership,” says Chief Campbell. “It’s a vision quickly taken up by our team and the many Indigenous partners who have made our annual event possible, and to the many who have attended over the years and continue to join us.”

For more information and to register, click here.

Deborah Jaremko is director of content for the Canadian Energy Centre, a Troy Media Editorial Content Provider Partner.

For interview requests, click here.

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