Mr. Finnigan, you and I have had a chance to talk about this, and we have also talked with indigenous leaders from our province in New Brunswick. I have thought, as part of our government's framework for the recognition of rights and a nation-to-nation approach to reconciliation, that we should acknowledge, when making decisions on the management of ecosystems and fisheries resources, that one of the important inputs has to be the traditional knowledge that indigenous people have held for, in many cases, thousands of years. That can and should form part of the considerations that, in our view, ministers and governments must take into account when making decisions on the sustainable management of ecosystems.
We thought it would be important to clarify in the law an obligation on the government to consider traditional knowledge. It is also important to safeguard that traditional knowledge because, in the traditional intellectual property sense, that knowledge doesn't belong to us. It belongs to the indigenous nations. We wanted to have provisions to assure them that, if their knowledge was shared with governments as part of a scientific exercise in understanding ecosystems, this knowledge would be respected and also protected. We wanted to have that clearly spelled out in the legislation.