MONCTON, NEW BRUNSWICK: The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) confirmed financial support for tourism projects in the region.
Tourism supports over 100,000 jobs at more than 8,000 businesses across Atlantic Canada and the tourism sector has been hit hard by COVID-19.
Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages, and Mike Kelloway, MP for Cape Breton-Canso, today announced $1,778,628 million for projects across Cape Breton and North Eastern Nova Scotia.
“COVID-19 has had a significant impact on the economy and will certainly have an impact on our coveted tourism industry,” Kelloway said. “The funding announced today will help local organizations keep their doors open and help strengthen our economy. With the economy re-opening, I hope we can welcome more and more Nova Scotian’s to Cape Breton-Canso for staycations this season. Cape Breton and North Eastern Nova Scotia has shown great resiliency throughout this pandemic, we’re getting through this together day by day and I’m confident we’ll come out of this stronger.”
Delivered by ACOA, this funding will support several local organizations.
The Ceilidh Trails Groomers Association will receive $54,241 to purchase a snow groomer to maintain trails.
The Celtic Colours Festival Society has been approved for $1,200,000 to host the annual Celtic Colours International Festival for the next three years.
“ACOA’s ongoing investment in Celtic Colours International Festival is a recognition of the festival’s impact and the role it plays in supporting the cultural sector of the Island,” said Mike McSween, executive director, Celtic Colours. “This investment supports the many artists and community groups who work directly with Celtic Colours each year. As we begin preparations for our 25th anniversary celebration in 2021 – and look toward recovery post COVID-19 – this support is critical and most welcome.”
The Celtic Music Interpretive Centre Society was greenlit for $17,382 to upgrade an e-commerce Web site and equipment in reaction to COVID-19.
The Celtic Shores Coastal Trail Association will see $355,525 from ACOA to upgrade trail infrastructure in western Cape Breton.
The Gaelic College Foundation gets $420,000 to promote KitchenFest! in 2020, 2021 and 2022.
This complements the funding that each province is receiving from Destination Canada for destination marketing organizations, $4.5 million in total, to implement targeted marketing programs and encourage residents to discover their own backyards.
Today’s announcement includes the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund to cover those who don’t qualify for other programs. The government redirected $30 million from Destination Canada’s budget towards domestic travel.
The funding announced today is provided through ACOA’s programs, which support projects that promote sustainable community economic development, enhance the development and growth of businesses and facilitate innovation.
ACOA is investing more than $9 million to support 71 tourism projects across the four Atlantic provinces.
ACOA is also contributing more than $2.4 million to support 10 initiatives with nine destination development and marketing organizations in Atlantic Canada.
On May 31, Joly announced that over the next 18 months, Destination Canada, Canada’s national tourism marketing organization, will invest $30 million in provincial marketing organizations (PMOs), which will be matched by provinces and territories, to deliver locally-led marketing programs.