Government Transfers Ownership of Federal Mineral Rights, $13 Million in Revenues to Manitoba

OTTAWA, Feb. 10, 2017 /CNW/ - Ensuring our provincial and territorial partners are treated fairly is fundamental to creating jobs and economic prosperity for middle-class Canadians.

Canada's Minister of Natural Resources, the Honourable Jim Carr, and Manitoba's Minister of Growth Enterprise and Trade, the Honourable Cliff Cullen, today formally announced an agreement to transfer the Federal Soldier Settlement Board mineral rights and associated revenues from the Government of Canada to the Government of Manitoba. This agreement provides Manitoba with a payment of about $13 million for revenues generated from past oil and gas activities on these lands.   

The Soldier Settlement Board was created by the Government of Canada in 1917 to assist veterans returning from the First World War to set up farms. Lands in various provinces were leased to veterans, but the federal government reserved the mineral rights beneath the land surface.

The Government leased some of these mineral rights for the production of oil and gas and collected royalties, rentals and returns associated with these leases. The 1930 agreement that transferred natural resources to the Province of Manitoba did not include the transfer of these mineral rights and revenues from the Government of Canada. 

In 2015, the Governments of Canada and Manitoba began working on a transfer agreement that was signed following consultations with affected Indigenous communities in the province. Both governments consider the agreement to be fair in recognizing provincial jurisdiction over the subsurface mineral rights. The agreement also demonstrates the Government of Canada's commitment to consulting with Indigenous communities and to working with its provincial and territorial partners to the benefit of all Canadians. 

Quotes

"This agreement demonstrates fairness and respect as integral components in building and maintaining strong working relationships with our provincial and territorial partners. Through our constructive interactions with the province, we were able to resolve what had been a longstanding issue."
Jim Carr, Canada's Minister of Natural Resources

"We are proud to work with the Government of Canada on the resolution of this outstanding settlement. The restoration of these subsurface mineral rights is significant to our government's pursuit of economic development and the preservation of natural resources in our province. Mineral resource development is a key aspect of unlocking the potential of our northern regions, which the Manitoba government is pursuing in consultation with affected communities and stakeholder groups.

Cliff Cullen, Manitoba Minister of Growth Enterprise and Trade

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SOURCE Natural Resources Canada

For further information: Contacts: Alexandre Deslongchamps, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Natural Resources, 343-292-6837; Natural Resources Canada, Media Relations, 343-292-6100: Province of Manitoba Communications Services, 204-945-0750

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