August 27, 2021

The Canadian North is deeply entrenched in our history, culture, literature, art, and music. It’s also a diverse storehouse of energy and natural resources, as well as being vulnerable to climate change. It is for these reasons that protecting national sovereignty should be a first and foremost responsibility of the national government. Our Government recognizes the importance of this responsibility and has introduced a series of measures that will strengthen Canada’s Arctic sovereignty.

The first of these measures is a Canadian Forces Arctic Training Centre that will be established in Resolute Bay. The Training Centre will be a year-round multi-purpose facility, supporting Arctic training operations, accommodating up to 100 personnel. Training equipment and vehicles stationed at the site will also provide an increased capability and faster response time in support of regional military or civilian emergency operations.
From this location, Canadian Forces personnel will exercise year-round patrols in an important region of the North. A dozen Canadian military and civilian employees will be permanently dedicated to administering the facilities including two full-time positions in Resolute Bay. The establishment of the Training Centre will significantly increase Canadian military operational expertise in the Arctic and the overall Canadian military presence in the North.

The second measure our Government is taking to protect Arctic sovereignty is the expansion of the size and capabilities of the Canadian Rangers. The Canadian Rangers are part-time reservists who provide a military presence in remote, isolated and coastal communities of Canada. They were established in 1947 and are responsible for protecting Canada’s sovereignty by reporting unusual activities or sightings, collecting local data of significance to the Canadian Forces, and conducting surveillance or sovereignty patrols as required. Currently, there are 4,100 Rangers and they are grouped into five Canadian Ranger Patrol Groups.

Operating under the command of the Canadian army, the Rangers will be expanded to 5,000 personnel and their uniforms, weapons, and transport vehicles will be upgraded and modernized. This expansion will enable more and larger Ranger Patrols.

The third measure recently announced by our Government is the establishment of a docking and refueling facility in Nanisivik. Establishing a deep water port in Nanisivik will extend the operational range of the Navy in the Arctic. Ships will be able to re-supply, refuel, embark equipment and supplies, and transfer personnel there. The location is strategically located inside the eastern entrance to the Northwest Passage and it is equipped with docking infrastructure. The port’s main purpose will be military, but will also have important civilian functions.

When combined, these three significant measures introduced by our Government will substantially strengthen Canada’s sovereignty over the Arctic, while benefiting the communities throughout the region. Jobs will be created and the safety and security of the people who live there will be enhanced. Furthermore, these measures tell the world that Canada has a real and long-term presence in the Arctic and that it is an indivisible part of the True North Strong and Free.

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