• By: OLM Staff

Unofficial Launch of Northern Lights Showcase

The 2012 Northern Lights Showcase – a three day extravaganza of the North to be held in Ottawa next February – had its unofficial launch last week with a photo shoot and press conference involving seven high profile Northern leaders.

In attendance were: Premier of Nunavut Eva Aariak, President of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami Mary Simon, former Premier of Northwest Territories, Nellie Cornoyea, Senior Negotiator of the Nunatsiavut Government Isabella Pain, Chairman of the Kativik Regional Government Maggie Emudluk, renowned Inuit Artist Kenojuak Askevak and Canadian Singer/Songwriter Elisapie Isaac. Also in attendance was Federal Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq. Ms. Aglukkaq is also the MP for Nunavut, the Federal Minister for Responsible for the North and the Federal Minister Responsible for the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency.

The photo shoot by re-known Ottawa photographer Paul Couvrette at the Lord Elgin Hotel was held to take the photograph January cover of Ottawa Life Magazine. The theme of the issue is women of influence in Canada’s North. It also marked the unofficial start of the final run up to the 2012 Northern Lights Showcase. The event, a joint venture of the Baffin Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Labrador North Chamber of Commerce, will celebrate Canada’s north and eastern arctic including the regions of Nunavut, Nunavik, Nunatsiavut and Labrador.  Northern Lights, a business and cultural showcase strives to strengthen partnerships between Canada’s northern and southern key business and government stakeholders. Around 1,000 attendees and 140 exhibitors are expected to attend the event.

Speaking in her role as Minister Responsible for the North and for the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency Leona Aglukkaq said the Northern Lights Showcase was “our opportunity to showcase what the North is all about with its culture, artists and its business opportunities.” Creating economic links between the North and the South will be the focus of the Northern Lights Showcase along with a promotion of the rich cultural heritage of Northern Canada.

Economic growth in the North Aglukkaq said was “huge” with her riding of Nunavut recording the largest increase of any province or territory in Canada. Statistics Canada stated Nunavut’s real GDP increased by 11 per cent in 2010 compared to the national average of 3.2%. “It is important,” added Aglukkaq “that Inuit be part of that growth which is very important not just to Nunavut but to the three territories that present 40% of Canada’s land mass.”

More information on the 2012 Northern Lights Showcase and how to be involved please visit www.northernlightsottawa.com.