One can be forgiven for not knowing what PNWER stands for, but it’s an organization in which Saskatchewan’s continued involvement is important. The Pacific NorthWest Economic Region (PNWER) was formed in 1991 by state and provincial legislators who recognized a growing need for regional collaboration on major public policy issues. For the longest time, Saskatchewan sat on the outside of the membership which included British Columbia, Alberta, Yukon, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Alaska. But with the election of the Wall government in 2007, and a desire to be a driver of public policy that impacts our citizens rather than a tepid bystander, the province joined PNWER and has effectively contributed strong leadership and benefited from stronger relationships with neighboring governments ever since.
PNWER is a statutory public/private partnership and its goals are to:
promote greater regional collaboration;
enhance the competitiveness of the region in both domestic and international markets;
leverage regional influence in Ottawa and Washington D.C.; and
achieve continued economic growth while maintaining the region's natural beauty and environment.
Saskatchewan’s involvement builds on its existing trading relationships and helps the province, our businesses and industries develop new ones in order to sustain and strengthen the province's economic momentum. At a time when trade, energy, agriculture and environmental issues are top of mind and cause for debate even among Canadian provinces, let alone with our American neighbors, the more opportunities there are for open dialogue and communication, the better.
PNWER affords Saskatchewan and our businesses the opportunity to pursue regional interests in a variety of sectors. In addition, by working together with state governments, PNWER membership also makes it easier for Saskatchewan to engage key decision makers within the U.S. national government. This has helped our province effectively communicate our position on items such as Country of Origin Labelling for the livestocksector, energy and other trade issues.
In a few weeks, Saskatchewan will host the annual PNWER Summit in Saskatoon and Harris Greenaway Communications was pleased to be asked to handle public and media relations for the event which will explore shared challenges, discuss best practices and promote regional relationships among governments, industry and businesses in the Pacific Northwest. We welcome everyone to our beautiful province and city and look forward to an engaging and productive four days of information sharing and discussion.