Photo: George Gobet Agence France-Presse
According to François Legault, nowadays there are “real problems” in the allocation of the cuts and in the price of the fiber.
The prime minister François Legault took the opportunity Thursday to his presence in the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean to announce his government would submit, by October a new version of the forest regime.
According to him, currently there are “real problems” in the allocation of the cuts and in the price of the fiber.
“It is necessary and it is urgent to allow projects to be realized, he argued. If we were able to solve the problem of the forest regime, I would be confident of seeing one or two projects realized. “
Mr. Legault recalled during his press conference in Alma that it was committed in the course of the election campaign in 2018 to revise this policy. He continues to believe that the establishment by the government of the Parti québécois at the time ” does not hold the road with businesses.”
He wants the new forestry regime allows for more “predictability” for businesses.
“We can’t not know where we are going, to have a significant portion of the capacities of cuts in the auction each year,” said Mr. Legault. We must have predictability, at least over a period of three years, on the cutting rights if we want businesses to invest in new equipment. “
Rio Tinto, and LNG
In addition, the prime minister has also referred to the difficulties currently plaguing the aluminium sector. This market is in erosion, particularly due to a fall in demand from carmakers following the pandemic of COVID-19. He was said to have been the subject of discussions with the management of the giant Rio Tinto, which is very present in the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean.
Mr. Legault has recalled Rio Tinto the importance of respecting the promises made about the future of the facilities of the company at Arvida. “It is necessary that the plant remains open until 2025, and that the promise to build the AP60 is respected “, he launched.
He says he is ready to financially assist Rio Tinto to carry out these projects, but on the condition that the company complies with its promises of investment. “There is no question of roll back, warned the prime minister. It means, among other via electricity contracts. It was a handful to negotiate with Rio Tinto, but we will not compromise in contrast to the liberal Party. It is important that all these jobs are protected. “
Last October, the company had announced that it was abandoning its project to build 16 new vessels to its AP60 plant in Arvida.
As for the project of a liquefaction plant of LNG, Mr. Legault has shown more caution, while defending its rationale, stating that it was good for the economy and the environment.
He said he was very worried for the existence of the project is always looking for private investors. “This is a project highly criticized. It is sure that the private investors are questioning the social acceptability of the project. Come the pandemic, and the economic crisis, ” he said.
Mr. Legault indicated that the government will not provide financial assistance to this project if it does not receive private investment.