B.C. Premier John Horgan and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau meet at Nanaimo’s Vancouver Island Conference Centre. NICHOLAS PESCOD/The News Bulletin

B.C. Premier John Horgan and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau meet at Nanaimo’s Vancouver Island Conference Centre. NICHOLAS PESCOD/The News Bulletin

Prime minister greeted by B.C. premier as cabinet retreat begins

PM Justin Trudeau and Premier John Horgan meet in advance of federal cabinet meetings in Nanaimo

The Canadian Prime Minister and his cabinet ministers will be in the Harbour City for the next few days, talking trade, economics and border security.

It’s all part of the Liberal government’s cabinet retreat, which was announced by PM Justin Trudeau earlier this month and is take place at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre today, Aug. 21, through Thursday.

Premier John Horgan was in Nanaimo this afternoon to greet the prime minister.

Trudeau said there will be conversations this week around topics such as affordability, housing and fishing and salmon protection.

Wildfires were also mentioned; Trudeau said his thoughts were with crews fighting wildfires around the province and the PM said he was planning meet with crews and evacuees.

Horgan said he cannot recall the last time a federal cabinet retreat occurred on Vancouver Island.

“I can’t remember it ever happening,” he said, adding that he is looking forward to the discussions and is “delighted” to have the PM and cabinet ministers here.

Horgan said he cannot recall the last time a federal cabinet retreat occurred on Vancouver Island.

“I can’t remember it ever happening,” he said, adding that he is looking forward to the discussions and is “delighted” to have the PM and cabinet ministers here.

story continues below

Some federal ministers arrived in Nanaimo early. Navdeep Bains, minister of innovation, science and economic development, led digital and data consultations with tech-industry representatives at the conference centre on Monday. There was a Liberal Party fundraiser Monday night, and Jane Philpott, minister of indigenous services, was on hand Tuesday morning for a funding announcement of support for Huu-ay-aht First Nations children’s programs.

Bains said this week’s cabinet meetings will focus on the government’s economic agenda, with conversations around NAFTA.

“But it’s really focused on people, on how can we help their day-to-day cost-of-living issues, how can we make sure that the anxieties they have about their own job prospects and the job prospects of their kids are addressed,” Bains said. “This is a great opportunity for us to continue to lay track for our economic policies, focus on that, but also get ready for the election, as well, which is coming around the corner in 2019.”

The cabinet retreat will wrap up by 5 p.m. on Thursday afternoon. While meetings take place at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre throughout Wednesday and Thursday, the events are not public.

The Public Service Alliance of Canada announced in press release that members would be demonstrating near the Service Canada office on Front Street on Wednesday afternoon, in protest of the Phoenix pay system.

RELATED: PM Trudeau and federal ministers to meet in Nanaimo

-with files from Greg Sakaki/The News Bulletin

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cowichan Valley WildSafeBC coordinator Amanda Crowston teaches a Grade 5/6 class at Ecole Cobble Hill last fall. (Submitted)
The bears are back in town and so is WildSafeBC

The bears are back in town so keep an eye out, reminds… Continue reading

The Regional District of Nanaimo has its sights set on busing to the Cowichan Valley in time for March 2022. (News Bulletin file)
Bus link between Nanaimo and the Cowichan Valley expected by next March

Unallocated transit hours already in Regional District of Nanaimo budget

North Cowichan has heated exchange over timelines of its official community plan review. (File photo)
North Cowichan’s OCP review divides council

Tight timelines leads to heated debate

Matt Ellison was a star with the Kerry Park Islanders before embarking on a pro career that included stops in the NHL and KHL. (Submitted)
Ex-NHLers to highlight Kerry Park-Peninsula alumni games

Matt Ellison and Kyle Greentree commit to suit up in August

Aaron Stone, chairman of the Island Coastal Economic Trust, said he’s encouraged with the province providing finding for local agencies to hire staff to help get back on economic track during the pandemic. (File photo)
$70K for Economic Development Cowichan for new analyst

Temporary position to help recover from pandemic

A bullet hole is seen in the windshield of an RCMP vehicle approximately 4 km from Vancouver International Airport after a one person was killed during a shooting outside the international departures terminal at the airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Homicide team IDs man in fatal YVR shooting as police grapple with spate of gang violence

Man, 20, charged in separate fatal shooting Burnaby over the weekend

RCMP are searching for Philip Toner, who is a ‘person of interest’ in the investigation of a suspicious death in Kootenay National Park last week. Photo courtesy BC RCMP.
RCMP identify ‘person of interest’ in Kootenay National Park suspicious death

Police are looking for Philip Toner, who was known to a woman found dead near Radium last week

Vancouver Canucks goaltender Thatcher Demko (35) makes a save on Winnipeg Jets’ Nate Thompson (11) during second period NHL action in Winnipeg, Monday, May 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Greenslade
Vancouver Canucks see NHL playoff hopes dashed despite 3-1 win over Winnipeg

Montreal Canadiens earn final North Division post-season spot

The B.C. legislature went from 85 seats to 87 before the 2017 election, causing a reorganization with curved rows and new desks squeezed in at the back. The next electoral boundary review could see another six seats added. (Black Press files)
B.C. election law could add six seats, remove rural protection

North, Kootenays could lose seats as cities gain more

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is investigating the shooting of an Indigenous woman in the Ucluelet First Nation community of Hitacu. (Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. First Nation wants ‘massive change’ after its 3rd police shooting in less than a year

Nuu-chah-nulth woman recovering from gunshot wounds in weekend incident near Ucluelet

Nurse Gurinder Rai, left, administers the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to Maria Yule at a Fraser Health drive-thru vaccination site, in Coquitlam, B.C., on Wednesday, May 5, 2021. The site is open for vaccinations 11 hours per day to those who have pre-booked an appointment. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
COVID vaccine bookings to open for adults 40+, or 18+ in hotspots, across B.C.

Only people who have registered will get their alert to book

Dr. Victoria Lee, CEO of Fraser Health, hosts an update on efforts to contain B.C.’s COVID-19 transmission in Surrey and the Fraser Valley and protect hospitals in the Lower Mainland, May 6, 2021. (B.C. government video)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate slowing, 20 more people die

Deaths include two people in their 40s, two in their 50s

Most Read