Government of Canada highlights next steps for Canada’s blue economy

HALIFAX, June 3, 2024 – The oceans are vital to the livelihood of communities across Canada. They have the potential to be part of a climate solution, create more opportunities for coastal and inland communities, and contribute to a more sustainable and prosperous blue economy.

Today, at the H2O Conference in Halifax, the Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, announced the release of the Blue Economy Regulatory Roadmap. This Roadmap outlines the steps the Government of Canada will take to support innovation and economic growth related to Canada’s oceans. It focuses on five main areas: marine renewable energies and environmental protection, marine spatial planning, autonomous surface vessels, ocean technologies, and sustainable fishing gear and practices. The Roadmap responds to what we’ve heard from Canadians during months of public consultations on related regulations, and proposes ways to help communities and businesses dependent on the ocean economy to make long-term investments in solutions that foster innovation and advance sustainability.

Development of the Roadmap was led by Fisheries and Oceans Canada in partnership with Natural Resources Canada, Transport Canada, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, and the National Research Council, as part of the Targeted Regulatory Review Initiative coordinated by the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat.

Canada needs healthy ocean spaces to transform our ocean economy into a sustainable blue economy. This Roadmap will help deliver sustainable results, proposing a government-wide approach that recognizes that better ocean protection is key to ensuring prosperous livelihoods and communities.


“Our oceans hold immense potential to combat climate change and stimulate sustainable economic growth. This Roadmap marks an important step toward removing barriers for businesses that depend on the ocean to grow sustainably, which will significantly benefit all Canadians.”

The Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and Canadian Coast Guard

“Canada’s marine sector is vital to our economy and supply chains. By developing new technologies, we support and enhance innovation in the blue economy. The Blue Economy Strategy complements and aligns with our ongoing work under the Oceans Protection Plan, which continues to ensure safer shipping, improve protection of marine ecosystems and species, and strengthen the way we prevent and respond to marine incidents.”

The Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Transport

“Canadian innovators are leaders in the development of ocean technology products and services, supporting the transition to a prosperous and sustainable blue economy. The Roadmap is essential to foster the environment these innovators need to accelerate the development and commercialization of their solutions, positioning themselves to take advantage of global export opportunities.”

The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry

“Our oceans are among Canada’s most important natural resources. This roadmap will enable us to better protect our ocean waters and industries. In turn, these new protections will support sustainable economic growth and innovation, while continuing to put the health and safety of Canadians, and the environment they value and depend on, at the heart of our priorities.”

The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources

“The National Research Council is proud to contribute to the implementation of the Blue Economy Regulatory Roadmap, leveraging the unique expertise of our Ocean, Coastal and River Engineering Research Centre to advance ocean technologies and autonomous vessels, and support Canada’s blue economy.”

Mitch Davies, President, National Research Council Canada

“We’re implementing more than 100 separate regulatory modernization initiatives across sectors and themes, which now includes Canada’s blue economy. This is a concrete example of how our government is modernizing regulations, and supporting sustainable economic growth, while maintaining strong health, safety and environmental safeguards. We will continue to cut red tape and support the Canadian economy.”

The Honourable Anita Anand, President of the Treasury Board

Quick facts

  • In 2022, DFO and TBS launched the Blue Economy Regulatory Review (BERR), which examined the impact of regulation on ocean innovation. The review examined regulatory practices that act as bottlenecks to economic growth and innovation, while continuing to prioritize health, safety and environmental responsibilities in the blue economy.
  • As part of the EREB, DFO and TBS invited Canadians to share their views on how regulations affect ocean innovation, the barriers to environmentally sustainable growth, and ways to develop flexible regulations to address the concerns of forward-looking ocean industries.
  • Fish and seafood are among Canada’s leading food exports. In 2023, Canada exported over $7.6 billion worth of fish and seafood to 115 countries.

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SOURCE Fisheries and Oceans Canada

For further information: Jérémy Collard, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and Canadian Coast Guard,; Media Relations, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, 613-990-7537,