The Indigenous-owned venture will undertake fabrication activities for Bruce Power, while creating employment, training and skill development opportunities for local Indigenous peoples.
Makwa Development Corp., which is owned by Nawash residents Scott Lee and Shane Chegano, has joined forces with Cahill Constructors Ltd., one of the largest multi-disciplinary construction and fabrication companies in Canada to create Makwa-Cahill. In the spirit of Maawanji’odiwag, which means ‘coming together,’ Makwa-Cahill will collaborate to deliver services to nuclear and energy clients through its fabrication facility in Owen Sound, Ontario.
“The nuclear industry is vital to meeting the electricity needs of Ontario,” said Scott Lee, President of Makwa Developments. “We are pleased to have Makwa-Cahill enter into this supplier agreement with Bruce Power, and ensuring that our Indigenous communities will have a key ongoing role in the nuclear industry.”
“Makwa-Cahill is a fully qualified Indigenous fabrication company,” said Mike Benham, President of Makwa-Cahill. “Once we are in the work-execution phase, we will hire and provide on-the-job training for skilled tradespeople to meet the needs of Bruce Power and other energy sector clients in Ontario.”
Mike Rencheck, Bruce Power’s President and CEO, said the Makwa-Cahill joint venture will create meaningful employment opportunities for skilled workers, while Bruce Power’s Life-Extension Program sets a long-term framework for the relationship.
“Bruce Power is committed to providing wealth-creation opportunities for Indigenous peoples and supporting economic development within local communities,” Rencheck said. “The Makwa-Cahill joint venture will advance job creation for skilled tradespeople from Georgian College and the Saugeen Ojibway Nation, helping provide Bruce Power and our nuclear supply chain with the skillsets required to advance our long-term investment program.”
Greg Rickford, Minister of Indigenous Affairs and Minister of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry, praised the partnership and the many benefits it will generate.
“It’s very encouraging to see this collaboration between Bruce Power, Makwa Development and Cahill Constructors,” Minister Rickford said. “These are the types of partnerships that support economic development, create good jobs, and provide opportunities for First Nations communities to share in Ontario’s prosperity.”
Todd Smith, Minister of Energy echoed his support for the partnership.
“We are proud to support this partnership which will provide on-the-job training and see more Indigenous people involved in the energy sector,” said Minister Smith. “Our vibrant nuclear sector and supply chain needs skilled tradespeople and this agreement will contribute to job creation and have a positive impact on the local economy.”
Featured image: (Bruce Power)