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Northwest Territories Lands and Resources Devolution Framework Agreement 2004

Date: 18 March 2004
Sub Category:Devolution Agreement (Canada) | Framework Agreement (Canada)
State/Country:Northwest Territories, Canada
Subject Matter:Economic Development | Mining and Minerals | Land Management | Local Government | Management / Administration
Summary Information:
The Northwest Territories Lands and Resources Devolution Framework Agreement (the Framework Agreement) was signed by the leaders of the Aboriginal Summit, the Government of Canada and the Government of the Northwest Territories on 18 March 2004. The Framework Agreement establishes the process for reaching a final agreement and sets out subjects for negotiation and target dates. The Framework Agreement envisages the transfer of legislative powers and responsibilities related to land and natural resources management which are presently administered by the Northern Affairs Program of the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (DIAND) and the National Energy Board (NEB).
Detailed Information:
The devolution process is set to include such subjects as the transfer from Canada of legislative authority, the development of renewable and non-renewable resource management regimes, financial relationships, and human and capital resources transfers. The Framework Agreement recognises:

  • The principle that transfer arrangements must respect any Aboriginal land claims or self-government agreements;
  • That devolution shall respect the existing land and resource rights of third parties;
  • That Canada will continue the provision of funding for areas designated for negotiation until a final agreement comes into effect;
  • That the net fiscal benefit to the Northwest Territories will be shared between the Government of the Northwest Territories and Aboriginal Governments; and
  • That resource revenues will be shared and allocated pursuant to a mutually agreed formula but will not affect arrangements established by existing land claim agreements.

    The Framework Agreement acknowledges that the devolution of administration and control of lands and natural resources in the Northwest Territories will 'enhance the ability of the territorial and Aboriginal governments to serve the interests of their constituents, increase their self-sufficiency, and promote the effective, efficient and coordinated development of the natural resources of the Northwest Territories.' The purpose of the Framework Agreement is to commit the parties to negotiation towards a final agreement, facilitate the process of such negotiations, and define the subject matters to be addressed in the negotiations. The Framework Agreement is not legally binding and does not affect the legal position of any of the signatory Parties. It can only be amended with the written consent of the Parties and confirms their commitment to continue their good faith negotiations according to the Memorandum of Intent signed in May 2001 (see Appendix 1). Part 4 of the Framework Agreement sets out the subject matters to be addressed. It is not intended to be an exhaustive list but includes:

  • Transfer by Canada of administration and control of Public Lands and Water rights including:
    o Provision of legislative authority;
    o Management of programs;
    o Existing third party interests;
    o Rights of Canada to resume administration and control of public Lands and water rights for the implementation of Aboriginal land and resources agreements or matters in the national interest.
  • Post-Devolution Land and Resources Management;
  • Oil and gas;
  • Waste sites;
  • Human Resources
  • Federal Properties, Assets, Contracts and Records;
  • Transitional and Ongoing Funding;
  • Net Fiscal Benefit;
  • Resources Revenue Sharing; and
  • Pre-Devolution and Post-Devolution Transition and Implementation.

    The Framework Agreement also sets out approval processes to be followed, details of the negotiation process and target dates. It envisages the conclusion of the final Devolution Agreement by June 2005 which is to take effect in April 2006.

  • Related Entries

  • Memorandum of Intent on Devolution and Resources Revenue Sharing 2001
  • Organisation
  • Gwich'in Tribal Council
  • Inuvialuit Regional Corporation
  • North Slave Metis Alliance
  • Sahtu Dene Council
  • Sahtu Secretariat Inc
  • Dogrib Treaty 11 Council
  • Government of Canada - Signatory
  • Government of the Northwest Territories - Signatory
  • Akaitcho Territory Government
  • Aboriginal Summit
  • Metis National Council
  • Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (Can)
  • People
  • Akaitcho Territory Dene First Nations
  • Metis People
  • Tlicho First Nation

  • References

    Government of the Northwest Territories (2004) Northwest Territories Lands and Resources Devolution Framework Agreement


    Devolution Agreement (Canada) | Framework Agreement (Canada)

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