Government injects $30M into Grieg NL’s salmon farm project
December 21, 2018
By Liza Mayer
The government of Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, has come out solidly behind Grieg NL Seafarms Ltd’s $250-million aquaculture project in the province, with Premier Dwight Ball announcing a $30-million government investment in the project in the form of repayable loans.
The project received final environmental approval in September, allowing construction to commence. Grieg NL aims to start operations in 2025.
Conservationists expressed dismay over the government’s stake in an industry it’s supposed to be regulating. But the executive director of the Newfoundland Aquaculture Industry Association, Mark Lane, says government investment in this case is no different than those in other sectors.
“If you look at oil and gas at its beginning 30 years ago in Newfoundland and Labrador, it took an equity investment from the provincial government to encourage people to come and try to produce oil here. Oil and gas is critical to Newfoundland and Labrador’s economy today,” Lane tells Aquaculture North America (ANA). “Those people who would tout that this is a conflict of interest, for the most part, are the same people who just simply don’t support aquaculture,” he says.
Lane believes the province’s $30-million stake will return to the province in terms of jobs and taxes, and contribute to the GDP.
Grieg NL expects the project to create 440 direct jobs at the farm and its processing facilities as well as 380 jobs in related sectors.