RED LAKE, ON, Aug. 19, 2013 /CNW/ - GOLDCORP INC. (GG) (TSX:G.TO) ("Goldcorp") and Lac Seul First Nation have signed Obishikokaang Collaboration Agreement setting a framework for continued consultation and support for current and future operations of Red Lake Gold Mines and defining the long-term benefits for the First Nation. A signing ceremony was held Friday, August 16 , in the Municipality of Red Lake, Ontario.
The agreement will bring recognition and economic benefits to Lac Seul First Nation, comprised of about 3,200 band members with significant historical ties to the development of the Red Lake gold camp. Many band members reside within the Municipality of Red Lake.
"Goldcorp's commitment to working with First Nations is once again demonstrated with this agreement, ensuring both the sustainable development of the areas in which we operate and long-term economic benefits for communities," said Chris Cormier , Mine General Manager at Goldcorp's Red Lake Gold Mines. "We look forward to working in partnership with Lac Seul First Nation to foster continued dialogue and to implement the initiatives set out in the agreement."
"This agreement demonstrates that Lac Seul First Nation can work successfully with industry," said Chief Clifford Bull of Lac Seul First Nation. "I want to extend my gratitude to Goldcorp for working with our First Nation to develop this Obishikokaang Collaboration Agreement, which will help create prosperity within our First Nation and the region, and certainty for Goldcorp."
The Collaboration Agreement lays the foundation for future benefits for the Lac Seul First Nation, including training and employment opportunities, business and contracting opportunities, and a framework for consultation on regulatory permitting as well as Goldcorp's future financial contributions in support of community development.
Red Lake Gold Mines is Goldcorp's top producing mine, yielding 507,700 ounces in 2012. The company is developing the Cochenour Project, which is essential to Red Lake's production profile, expected to commence operation in 2015.
The new agreement between Goldcorp and Lac Seul First Nation builds on the long-standing relationship between the two parties and is based on mutual respect, cooperation and coexistence. A series of local consultations that occurred in communities within both Ontario and Manitoba generated broad and deep support for the agreement.
"The negotiations, from the earliest days and then leading up to the final form of the Collaboration Agreement, were very intensive. The end result - the Obishikokaang Collaboration Agreement - means that a significant improvement in Lac Seul First Nation's relationship with Goldcorp and with Red Lake Gold Mines has been achieved," said Chief Bull. "We were always subject to confidentiality at the negotiating table, and were happy to be able to finally talk to the Membership about the terms of the Agreement we had structured. And we were pleased that the Agreement had almost unanimous support."
"Collaboration is only possible with open communication from both sides. This agreement, and the ongoing consultation that will result from it, demonstrates what can be achieved when industry and First Nations work closely together to foster mutual understanding and respect," said Cormier.
The agreement also provides additional funding for the Lac Seul Training Centre of Excellence and the Lac Seul First Nation Business Equity Fund. The Centre, founded last year with support from Goldcorp, provides quality, certified training programs and workshops to members of the community and the region at large. The Centre also provides scholarship and bursary opportunities for Lac Seul First Nation youth interested in pursuing postsecondary education.
Goldcorp is one of the world's fastest growing senior gold producers, with operations and development projects located in safe jurisdictions throughout the Americas. A Canadian company headquartered in Vancouver , British Columbia, Goldcorp employs more than 15,000 people worldwide. The Company is committed to responsible mining practices and is well positioned to deliver sustained, industry-leading growth and performance. www.goldcorp.com.
About Lac Seul First Nation
Lac Seul First Nation (Indian Reserve No. 28), known as Obishikokaang, is a large reserve in Northwestern Ontario, spanning islands and mainland between Lost Lake and main body of the Lac Seul reservoir. The reserve is divided into four electoral zones, represented by the communities of Kejick Bay, Whitefish Bay, Frenchman's Head, and the former community of Canoe River. The reserve lands are adjacent to the amalgamated boundary of the Municipality of Sioux Lookout at the town of Hudson and are crossed by a shipping route important to the early exploration and development of the Red Lake gold camp, which Obishikokaang understands to be within its traditional territory. The First Nation has a membership of approximately 3,200, of which about two-thirds reside off-reserve.
SOURCE: Goldcorp Inc.
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- Lac Seul First Nation
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Office: 416-645-3667 / Cell: 416-476-9534
Chief Clifford Bull
LSFN Band Office