The Klondike Hopes to Strike Gold (again) with World Heritage Site Designation

CanNor support for UNESCO nomination will increase tourism and economic opportunities for Indigenous Peoples

DAWSON CITY, YT, Oct. 24, 2016 /CNW/ - The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for CanNor, announced a $700,000 investment to support the nomination process for the Klondike to receive a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage Site designation.

The funding will support the Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in First Nation in developing the Klondike UNESCO World Heritage Assessment and Strategic Plan and the nomination dossier. The First Nation will also use the funding to develop a plan to prepare the community to take advantage of tourism and economic opportunities should the designation be received. A World Heritage Site designation would draw more visitors to the Klondike, increasing the need for hospitality and services industries and creating jobs for Indigenous Peoples in the region. The designation will also create greater opportunities for community cultural and environmental preservation.

The Klondike is in the heart of the Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in traditional territory. Unique around the world, the Tr'ondëk-Klondike region celebrates the co-existence of Indigenous and non-Indigenous culture brought together by the historic gold rush. When tens of thousands of gold seekers transformed the landscape with mining activities, the Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in maintained their traditional relationships and activities in the face of enormous changes to their lands.


"The Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in traditional territory, home of the historic Klondike gold rush, truly exemplifies the unique and rich culture of Canada. With this nomination and potential designation, we can celebrate our shared and unique cultures, welcome more visitors from around the world, and increase opportunities for economic development in the heart of this community."

Navdeep Bains
Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and
Minister responsible for the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

"The Klondike is a special place that the Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in have called home for thousands of years. By helping more people realize the outstanding cultural, historical, and environmental preservation of this region, the tourism benefits to this community will be significant. Indeed, all Yukoners will benefit from greater recognition of what our territory has to offer."

Larry Bagnell
Member of Parliament for Yukon

"The Tr'ondëk-Klondike UNESCO World Heritage Site designation would have positive social and economic impacts for our community and give us the chance to share our story with the world. This funding is crucial to advancing the project and getting one step closer to a successful nomination."

Roberta Joseph
Chief, Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in First Nation

Quick Facts

  • Complementing CanNor's investment of $711,248 over three years, the Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in First Nation is contributing $59,662 to this project.
  • The Klondike UNESCO nomination project is highlighted in the Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in Regional Economic Development Plan, which promotes sustainable economic development for the traditional territory.

For more information about CanNor, visit


SOURCE Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor)

For further information: Office of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, 343-291-2500; Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency, Krisandra Reid, Communications Advisor, Yukon Region, 867-667-3210; Tr'ondëk Hwëch'in First Nation, Molly Shore, Communications Assistant, 867-993-7100 ext. 428


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