Newfoundland fisheries payout concerns P.E.I.
A government payment of $400 million in compensation for the Newfoundland and Labrador fisheries industry has raised concerns on P.E.I.
The money, $280 million from Ottawa and $120 million from the province, is to offset the effects of the Canadian/European Trade Agreement.
The agreement will soften rules on fish processing in Newfoundland, which could affect the bottom line of their fishing industry. P.E.I. Innovation Minister Allen Roach said there should be equality for P.E.I.
"We have concerns about the agreement that was made with Newfoundland," said Roach.
"[We want] fair and equitable treatment, so that Prince Edward Island is on the same level playing field as every other province, particularly within the fishing industry."
He would not come out and say if P.E.I. is looking for financial compensation as well.
The province has had members on the CETA negotiating team, but Roach said the money for Newfoundland and Labrador caught them by surprise.
None of us that were around the table were aware of this, and up until that point they had had very tight discussions, open, honest discussions and so when this was made, it caught everybody unaware."
The P.E.I. government has lobbied Gail Shea, the Island's representative in the federal cabinet, and ACOA about the decision.
The money for the Newfoundland fishery was announced last fall. Other parts of the trade agreement are still being discussed.