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Nov 28, 2023
True reconciliation means acknowledging our right to develop our lands as we see fit
Speculation has swirled for months that Ottawa is planning to introduce a new Indigenous loan guarantee program, and last week’s fiscal update confirmed that more details will be included in the next federal budget. I am not totally against this idea, as it could help Indigenous groups overcome historical barriers to raising capital, particularly through borrowing. However, there has also been speculation that certain industries could be excluded from loan eligibility, in accordance with the government’s environmental, social and governance (ESG) investment framework. This is not OK.
If the government follows through with its plan to roll out a new Indigenous-tailored financial program, it should respect our right to self-determination, which encompasses our autonomy to make investment decisions based on our own, internally defined objectives.