Promoting sustainable and equitable economic development in the Metis and Canadian aboriginal communities
EDMONTON, ALBERTA–(Jan. 27, 2015) – KAQUO Forestry & Natural Resources Development Corporation (KAQUO), a joint venture between several of the Métis Settlements of northwest Alberta and Active Energy Group Plc, a London Stock Exchange-listed company, is holding the first KAQUO Métis Settlements Economic Development Summit today at The Oasis Centre in Edmonton, Alberta.
The private event – entitled ‘Working Together to Better Our Communities’ – unites key decision makers and stakeholders from across Canada to promote long-term sustainable economic development on Métis Settlements and other aboriginal lands in an equitable, environmentally responsible and culturally sensitive manner.
Attendees include leaders and members of the Alberta Métis communities, guests from other Métis, First Nations and Canadian aboriginal groups, KAQUO representatives and forestry experts, and senior international executives from Active Energy Group Plc.
The summit will be hosted by renowned First Nations actor Tom Jackson, who will also speak at the event, and guests will hear from a number of other distinguished Canadian aboriginal speakers, including Grand Chief Ronald M. Derrickson of British Columbia and Chairman of KAQUO; and Iner Gauchier, Greg Calliou and Gerald Cunningham, Chairmen of three of the Métis Settlements and Directors of KAQUO.
They will be joined by Richard Spinks, CEO of Active Energy Group Plc and President and CEO of KAQUO, one of the world’s leading experts at identifying and commercialising under-valued natural resources owned or controlled by disenfranchised indigenous peoples.
After several years of negotiations, KAQUO was formed in July 2014 with a specific mandate: to commercialise the natural resources on the Métis lands in an equitable, environmentally responsible and culturally sensitive manner, and to encourage long-term sustainable economic development and employment within the Métis communities.
KAQUO’s innovative business model, the first of its type in Canada, is already proving to be a template for other Canadian aboriginal groups in their efforts to achieve self-sufficiency and economic independence, while ensuring that they have an equitable say in how their substantial landholdings and natural resources will be commercialised.
“To the best of my knowledge, KAQUO’s approach is unique,” said Chairman Grand Chief Derrickson. “We’re determined to be inclusive, sensitive to our peoples’ culture and relationship to their lands, and completely transparent in all our dealings.”
“KAQUO’s initial focus on forestry management, and its decision to work alongside the Métis landowners by giving them an equal say in how their assets are commercialised, is already making a difference,” said Iner Gauchier, Chairman of Peavine Métis Settlement and a Director of KAQUO.
“We’re introducing investment and modern forestry management methods to bring well-paid employment and long-term economic opportunities to our people, while simultaneously improving infrastructure, education, healthcare and community facilities.”
EDITOR’S NOTES & CONTACT INFORMATION
About KAQUO Forestry & Natural Resources Development Corporation:
KAQUO Forestry & Natural Resources Development Corporation (www.kaquo.com) is a joint venture between several of the Métis Settlements of northwest Alberta and Active Energy Group Plc (www.active-energy.com), an international timber products firm listed on the London Stock Exchange.
The company was formed to commercialise the natural resources on the Métis lands in an equitable, environmentally responsible and culturally sensitive manner, and to encourage long-term sustainable economic development and employment within the Métis communities.
KAQUO’s first project is to commercialise the c250,000 hectares of forestry assets on the Métis Settlements, which it estimates contain some 35 million m3 of merchantable timber; and it is working with international investors on a number of innovative commercial schemes to monetise this valuable resource for the benefit of the local communities; while simultaneously improving infrastructure, education, healthcare and community facilities.