Look North

About Look North

Look North is a movement by northerners, for northerners to grow the economy in northern Manitoba. It is a long-term vision and plan to unleash the economic potential of the north for generations to come.

Look North is deeply rooted in the principle that the people of the north best understand their needs. Only through extensive engagement with both Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities, businesses, industry and labour leaders can we create a vision of growth and prosperity for northern Manitoba that is inclusive of all perspectives.

The Look North Story

In November 2016, the Manitoba Government announced the co-chairs of a new task force to lead the development and implementation of a northern economic development strategy. The named co-chairs of the strategy were: Onekanew (Chief) Christian Sinclair of the Opaskwayak Cree Nation and Chuck Davidson, president and CEO of the Manitoba Chambers of Commerce.

From December 2016 to June 2017, the Look North Task force held several meetings, events and conversations with northerners leading to the creation of the Look North Report and Action Plan (PDF) and formation of the Look North Steering Committee.

In March 2018, the Look North Steering Committee hosted roundtable meetings in Thompson and Flin Flon to discuss specific solutions and recommendations for each of the Look North priority areas. During these meetings northern stakeholders came together to discuss solutions, successes and opportunities around local economic development in northern Manitoba.

In June 2018, the Steering Committee co-chairs presented a progress update and recommendations to the Minister of Growth, Enterprise and Trade. One of their key recommendations included establishing a lead entity to coordinate northern economic development and implement the Look North strategy.

In December 2018, Manitoba launched its Economic Growth Action Plan that better aligns strategies that support economic development such as Look North. The Communities Economic Development Fund (CEDF), a Manitoba Crown corporation, was identified as the province's regional partner in northern Manitoba to co-ordinate economic development programming in northern Manitoba and lead implementation of Look North.

In March 2019, the province of Manitoba appointed five new members to the board of directors of CEDF and provided CEDF's board with a renewed mandate. The new board will continue to build momentum and recognizes that meaningful change requires a combination of short-term actions and long-term initiatives designed to increase economic prosperity.