Significant agreement supports expansion of BC’s Indigenous tourism industry
Coast Salish Territories (June 21, 2019): Indigenous Tourism BC (ITBC) and the British Columbia Assembly of First Nations (BCAFN) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to expand the province’s rich collection of Indigenous tourism products and experiences.
The MOU was signed at the opening ceremonies of ITBC’s annual Indigenous Cultural Festival in Victoria. Regional Chief Terry Teegee, signed on behalf of BCAFN which represents 203 First Nations across the province. The BCAFN advocates and advances the rights and interests of First Nations in BC.
By signing the MOU, both parties agree to collaborate with each other – as well as with tourism, business, educational and government organizations – to support growth of Indigenous tourism province-wide. The organizations pledge to ensure business owners and operators are equipped with the necessary skills, and resources, to meet increased demand for authentic cultural experiences. They will also develop guiding principles and initiatives that contribute to the economic prosperity of Indigenous people while supporting the provincial economy.
“Tourism is one of the fastest growing industries in BC, and a key economic driver. Similar expansion of Indigenous tourism relies on Stakeholder collaborations, such as our new partnership with BCAFN,” said Brenda Baptiste, board chair, Indigenous Tourism BC. “We look forward to working closely with BCAFN to promote economic development in Indigenous communities across the province.”
“We are thrilled to collaborate with ITBC with the mutual goal of supporting the expansion of BC’s Indigenous tourism industry,” stated Regional Chief Terry Teegee. “Our next steps are to connect with Indigenous business owners, operators and community members, and identify strategies to inspire growth in this important economic sector.”