We need to recognize that BC’s Interior and North account for 60 per cent of our provincial economy, and that no place in our Province has been more affected by these tough economic times. A Northern Prosperity Agenda is key to driving economic growth across the region.

Plan: I will optimize every asset we can to rebuild our Northern and Interior economy so that we can put that powerful economic engine back to work for British Columbia. This involves developing a bold action plan that includes making our North and Interior the preferred supply chain between China and the USA, the two largest economies in the world. The northern corridor offers Asia and the US the most efficient trade route to North America, and I want us to turn that capacity into jobs and opportunities.

Plan: I will pull together community leaders to leverage the North’s strategic advantage as we recognize the potential we all see to create a new, vibrant economy with the kinds of jobs and opportunities families and northern communities are looking for. I want to drive a true Northern agenda - informed by Northerners - not Victoria.

Plan: I have announced key elements of a new Northern Prosperity Agenda designed to help drive BC’s economic growth in the coming decade. Based on things I’ve heard from people across the region, my plan 'For the North – By the North' includes:

  1. Establish a Premier's Regional Office in Prince George for the Premier and Cabinet to use as a base for interacting with people in Northern BC
  2. Make Prince George an international road, rail, tourism and air intermodal hub to better link the North to the world
  3. Expand and optimize our port and infrastructure assets at Prince Rupert, Ridley, Kitimat and Stewart, in order to provide Northern export and backhaul capability for our wood products, wood pellets, mineral resources and agricultural products
  4. Optimize Prince George as an “inland port” taking advantage of road, rail and air logistics capabilities
  5. Extend and increase our investment in the Interior and Rural Side Roads Program beyond 2013
  6. Renew the three-year Oil and Gas Road Improvement Program beyond 2011 to support private sector investment in oil and gas exploration
  7. Move forward with the Northwest Transmission Line to unlock natural resource and clean power potential such as wind, run of river and biomass
  8. Make BC public lands available for lease for the privately funded workforce housing projects needed to support resource and infrastructure development
  9. Reduce onerous ALR processes on Peace region farmland to ensure a regionally sensitive ALR
  10. Enhance our Northern skills and capacity to include engineering and address shortages in certain medical support positions through development of our northern educational institutions, geoscience research capabilities, and initiatives such as the proposed Wood Design and Innovation Centre

    Want to support Kevin Falcon? Click here to join the BC Liberal Party. The BC Liberal Party leadership vote will take place on February 26, 2011. Any member of the Party in good standing on Feb. 4, 2011 is eligible to vote.