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The number of businesses eligible for a federal program that prioritizes Indigenous companies when awarding contracts jumped more than 40 per cent over the past year, a rapid increase to a program that some community leaders say has overly broad criteria and is vulnerable to abuse.

Natan Obed, president of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, says the current standards for the Indigenous business directory are “far too inclusive,” that Ottawa should impose more stringent restrictions and that criteria should be limited to groups that are rights holders under the Constitution

“We are now living in an era where there are tremendous opportunities to be had for qualifying as a First Nations, Inuit and Métis business,” Mr. Obed told The Globe and Mail in an interview. “There are many actors in this country who want to take advantage of that.”

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The Globe and Mail

Publication Date

May 8, 2024