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GAIL Shea has returned as Canada's Minister of Fisheries and Oceans after Keith Ashfield stepped down from the position due to illness, and it's an appointment that has been welcomed by the BC Salmon Farmers Association.

"We wish Mr Ashfield a speedy recovery and welcome Minister Shea back to the Fisheries portfolio," said Mary Ellen Walling, Executive Director of BC Salmon Farmers Association. "We have been doing a lot of work with the Federal Government in recent months and we're pleased that someone with Minister Shea's experience and familiarity with the Fisheries portfolio will be taking over to ensure a smooth transition from one minister to the next."

The BCSFA is currently working with the Canadian Aquaculture Industry Alliance and the Federal Government on a number of issues relating to the industry's change from Provincial to Federal oversight, including work on the development of an Aquaculture Act.

"We developed an excellent working relationship with Minister Shea when she held the portfolio from 2008 to 2011," said Walling, "and we look forward to that relationship continuing into the future."

The BCSFA is also extending congratulations to Vancouver Island North Member of Parliament John Duncan, who returns to the cabinet table as Minister of State.

"Minister Duncan is a wonderful advocate for our region and we are pleased to see him return to cabinet," said Walling.

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