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Minister to tout LNG’s role in developing northern B.C. during community tour

B.C.’s Community, Sport and Cultural Development Minister Coralee Oakes in Vancouver on July 31, 2013.

John Lehmann/The Globe and Mail

B.C.'s plans for liquefied natural gas will be the main item on the agenda as Community, Sport and Cultural Development Minister Coralee Oakes begins a tour of northwestern B.C.

Oakes is due to meet with politicians, municipal staff, business and community leaders in Prince Rupert, Port Edward, Terrace and Kitimat to discuss the impact of LNG expansion.

She is responsible for building relationships and communications between the province and the communities affected by the Liberal government's plans for an LNG industry across northern B.C.

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The rookie minister says she will draw on her experience as a Quesnel city councillor and a director of the North Central Local Government Association as she speaks with local governments about impending changes.

Premier Christy Clark's government is pressing ahead with plans to create an LNG industry that it believes will bring historic employment and investment growth to northern B.C., and the entire province.

The Liberals estimate as many as 60,000 workers will be needed across the province during peak construction years, and the government says many of the largest projects are expected to be centred in the northwest.

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