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Governments of Newfoundland and Labrador and Nunavut Sign Memorandum of Understanding

February 8, 2023

NationTalk: Today, the Governments of Newfoundland and Labrador and Nunavut signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to strengthen areas of collaboration, partnership, and future development.

The MOU was signed by the Honourable Andrew Furey, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, the Honourable P.J. Akeeagok, Premier of Nunavut, the Honourable Lisa Dempster, Minister Responsible for Labrador Affairs and Minister Responsible for Indigenous Affairs and Reconciliation, and the Honourable Pamela Hakongak Gross, Deputy Premier, Government of Nunavut. The MOU signing ceremony took place during the Northern Lights 2023 conference in Ottawa.

As Northern neighbours, the people of Newfoundland and Labrador and Nunavut have personal, cultural and social relationships that have led to collaboration and partnerships. Both jurisdictions have strong Indigenous populations and share a like-minded approach to safe and sustainable Arctic development, focused on achieving mutual benefits for Northern and Indigenous communities.

The MOU asserts a strategic alliance for the jurisdictions and recognizes their respective strengths and expertise towards enhancing economic and social development and deriving benefits as opportunities emerge in the Arctic region.

The governments have agreed to establish a Cooperation and Implementation Committee, which will be co-chaired by the Labrador Affairs Secretariat, on behalf of the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, and the Department of Executive and Intergovernmental Affairs, on behalf of Government of Nunavut. The committee will jointly develop a framework for cooperation and coordination at the governmental level in areas of mutual interest.

Newfoundland and Labrador and Nunavut share a desire to build on their commonalities through advancing innovation, enhancing economic and social development, and promoting diversity and inclusiveness to support and maintain vibrant, prosperous communities.


“We value the partnership we have with the Government of Nunavut. We are geographic neighbours and we share many economic, social and cultural relationships. Signing this Memorandum of Understanding strengthens our efforts to continue working together on shared priorities such as climate change, health care, housing and emergency preparedness.”
Honourable Andrew Furey
Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador

“Nunavut’s relationship with Newfoundland and Labrador is founded on common values and a shared maritime history. This partnership allows us to work together to diversify our economies in areas like fisheries, tourism, and modern internet connectivity. As coastal regions we will collaborate on infrastructure that promotes growth and contributes to Canadian sovereignty.”
Honourable P.J. Akeeagok
Premier of Nunavut

“Newfoundland and Labrador and Nunavut share a common approach towards safe and sustainable development in the Arctic and the North. We look forward to building on our longstanding relationship and generating increased business opportunities and joint ventures to prepare for future development and increased economic activity.”
Honourable Lisa Dempster
Minister Responsible for Indigenous Affairs and Reconciliation
Minister Responsible for Labrador Affairs

“Through this Memorandum of Understanding, our governments can work to bolster social development and reduce homelessness and food insecurity. Together, we can strengthen our skilled labour force by partnering in education and training that is relevant and accessible to our remote communities.”
Honourable Pamela Hakongak Gross
Deputy Premier of Nunavut


Learn more

Memorandum of Understanding

Northern Lights 2023

Northern Development Ministers Forum


The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador and the Government of Nunavut initially signed an MOU in 2015. The agreement was based on a history of longstanding and successful cooperation between the two jurisdictions.

In recent years, the jurisdictions identified some of the challenges associated with working within the MOU and resolved to commence discussions towards updating the agreement to reflect current social and economic priorities.

Through the new MOU, the jurisdictions will collaborate, share information and facilitate partnerships in the following priority areas:

• natural resources;
• education and training;
• transportation;
• infrastructure;
• culture, language, heritage and tourism;
• research and development;
• health care;
• emergency preparedness;
• social development and wellness; and
• gender

As part of the development of a two-year work plan to implement initiatives in the identified priority areas, the Cooperation and Implementation Committee will produce an annual report to the Premiers outlining progress and potential areas for future collaboration and partnership.

Newfoundland and Labrador and Nunavut are members of the Northern Development Ministers Forum (NDMF), a group comprised of provinces and territories in the North. The NDMF advances the diverse and common interests of people living in Canada’s North, while raising awareness among decision-makers and the public about the accomplishments, contributions and potential of the North.