Western Forest Products and Huu-ay-aht First Nations completed a transaction for the sale and purchase of three properties, including Western’s dry land sort, located in Sarita Bay, British Columbia for a purchase price of CAD 3 million. The properties involved in the agreement with Western complete the reunification of Huu-ay-aht-owned lands at Sarita Bay.
According to the announcement, the transaction also involves a long-term lease back of the dry land sort to Western, an agreement to harvest 200,000 cubic metres of timber from Huu-ay-aht Lands, and an employment and training agreement that seeks to increase the number of Huu-ay-aht citizens participating in the forest sector.
With a long-term lease in place, Western will continue to operate its dry land sort at Sarita, supporting its timber operations in TFL 44.
Robert J. Dennis Sr., Huu-ay-aht Chief Councillor, commented:
“As a Nation, we want to focus on building a safe and healthy community, and that starts with good relationships, first with our citizens but also with our neighbours and business partners. Our citizens gave us the message that moving forward with Western is a key priority by providing their support at our Special People’s Assembly. Western has shown it respects Huu-ay-aht’s philosophy of Ancient Spirit, Modern Mind and our core values. We are writing the book on how business is to be done in our Ḥahuułi and opening the door to economic opportunities that will bring our people home and create a strong future for the next generation.”
For the Huu-ay-aht, the Sarita River is the “Heart of the People”. Huu-ay-aht received strong support for the land acquisition from its People’s Assembly held February 19, 2017.
Earlier Western Forest Products confirmed second fiscal quarter of 2017 dividend payable on June 16, 2017.
About Western Forest Products:
Western is an integrated Canadian forest products company and the largest coastal British Columbia woodland operator and lumber producer with an annual available harvest of approximately 6.1 million cubic metres of timber of which approximately 5.9 million cubic metres is from Crown lands and lumber capacity in excess of 1.1 billion board feet from eight sawmills and two remanufacturing plants. Principal activities conducted by the Company include timber harvesting, reforestation, sawmilling logs into lumber and wood chips and value-added remanufacturing. Substantially all of Western’s operations, employees and corporate facilities are located in the coastal region of British Columbia while its products are sold in over 25 countries worldwide.