Justin Trudeau says he isn't going to make any election promises during his visit to northern communities but the visit is a way to connect with voters during an election year.
The federal Liberal leader spoke with the CBC in Inuvik, N.W.T. earlier today. He is flying to Yellowknife this afternoon and to Iqaluit on Monday.
"I'm not here for promises, I'm here to learn, to listen, to engage with people of the North," he said. "There's a lot to see and the personal connections I establish when I'm up here are very important to me."
Trudeau was also critical of Stephen Harper's approach to the region. He said he considers sovereignty something built by people and that Harper has focused too much on the military and infrastructure during his northern tours.
"When you see the Conservatives failing so miserably on a program like Nutrition North, which is about making sure people can feed their families in the North, this is something that I think Canadians need to hear more of."
He said food prices vary too much between northern communities, but he didn't offer any specifics for how to improve the system.
There are currently no Liberal MPs from the territories. The party hasn't held the Western Arctic seat in almost ten years. Trudeau admits his party has a lot of ground to make up across the country, adding part of this visit will be ensuring there are good Liberal candidates ready for a 2015 election.
"Drawing together a plan that is going to serve the North and the entire country is something that I'm certainly doing," he said.
While in Inuvik, Trudeau met with leaders from the Gwich'in Tribal Council and the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation.
He and his son, Xavier, 7, also attended the annual Sunrise Festival, joining traditional drummers and dancers during a performance that capped off a community feast.