The Grand Council of the Crees

Resolving Past Differences

THE JAMES BAY CREES AND HYDRO-QUÉBEC RESOLVE THEIR PAST DIFFERENCES BY SIGNING AN HISTORICAL AGREEMENT

Posted: 2004-04-19

Montreal, Grand Chief Ted Moses and the President of Hydro-Québec, Mr. André Caillé, are pleased to announce that a new agreement was signed earlier today between the Cree Nation, Hydro-Québec and Société d'Énergie de la Baie James, putting an end to close to twenty years of litigation between the Crees and Hydro-Québec.

The "Agreement concerning a New Relationship between Hydro-Québec/SEBJ and the Crees of Eeyou Istchee" states that the parties have agreed to maintain a relationship based on mutual respect, good faith, reconciliation, partnership, meaningful participation and mutually beneficial economic and social arrangements. In particular, Hydro-Québec and SEBJ have agreed to facilitate the participation of the James Bay Crees in hydroelectric development through partnership, employment and contracts.

The principal purposes of the new Agreement are:

The Agreement is the result of the mediation process initiated by the Crees and Hydro-Québec two years ago, as an undertaking under the "Paix des braves" Agreement reached between the Cree Nation and the Government of Québec.

The mediation process was conducted by the former Premier of Québec, Me Lucien Bouchard. The representatives of the James Bay Crees in the mediation process included Mr. Roderick Pachano, Mr. Philip Awashish, Me Robert Mainville and Me John-Paul Murdoch. Hydro-Québec was represented by Mr. Thierry Vandal, Mr. Armand Couture and Me Gilles Marchand.

The Agreement was recently approved by the Government of Québec and it will also be signed by the Ministre délégué aux Affaires intergouvernementales canadiennes et aux Affaires autochtones, Mr. Benoît Pelletier.

"I am very pleased to finally see Hydro-Québec and the Cree Nation putting aside their past differences" , stated Grand Chief Ted Moses. "I expect this agreement to result in concrete benefits, contracts and employment for the Crees. I see it as particularly beneficial to the affected Cree trappers and to the Cree youth" , he added.

"I see this agreement as opening a new phase in the relationship between Hydro-Québec and the Crees, a relationship based on mutual respect, good faith and partnership" , said the President of Hydro-Québec, Mr. André Caillé.

The signing ceremony took place today in the Cree community of Chisasibi, located at the mouth of the La Grande Riviére.

-30-

For more information, contact:

Bill Namagoose, Executive Director
Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee): (613) 725-7024

Rom?o Saganash, Director of Québec Relations
Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee): (418) 564-1598

Christine Martin, Press Officer
Hydro-Québec and SEBJ (514) 289-2289