The GNWT will be spending upwards of $230,000 to send representatives to the AME Roundup mining Conference in BC next week.
Last year, the government spent about $193,000 on expenses for the conference, and The cost has been steadily rising.
Some have scrutinized the spending on this conference, even last year when the amount was lower.
The Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment is sending 16 representatives, and Minister Wally Schumann says his department is there to restore investment and network.
We’re mandated to try to restore the investment climate and enhance what we have in the Northwest Territories. I’ve said a number of times and I’m on the record saying this isn’t just money we’re chasing in Canada this is money that can be placed anywhere in the world and we need to be able to talk to people and tell them what we have.
Schumann noted there will be an aboriginal presence to try to help enhance mining knowledge.
We want to be able to enhance aboriginal engagement and their capacity on the mining side particularly. Some groups are well ahead of others on that side of it.
MLAs Testart, Van Thuyne and O’Reilly have all elected to not attend the conference, with O’Reilly stating the GNWT is spending too much on too little and Testart also raising his own questions about the amount spent.
The total cost will be revealed after the conference, which runs January 22-25.