With its debt to Nunavut Trust paid, Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. improves overall finances

·2 min read
Olayuk Akesuk, president of the Qikiqtani Inuit Association, and Aluki Kotierk, president of Nunavut Tunngavik Inc., during a Nunavut Tunngavik board meeting this week.  (CBC - image credit)
Olayuk Akesuk, president of the Qikiqtani Inuit Association, and Aluki Kotierk, president of Nunavut Tunngavik Inc., during a Nunavut Tunngavik board meeting this week. (CBC - image credit)

The finances and management of Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. (NTI), the organization representing Inuit in Nunavut, saw a good year ending March 31.

That was the welcome news delivered by Shawn Lester, a managing partner at Lester Landau, as he went over NTI's latest audited financial statements Wednesday at NTI's board of directors meeting.

The audit looked at NTI's financial cash flow and performance, and, for 2021-2022 gave an "unmodified opinion," Lester said.

This means the auditor was satisfied with the financial statements audited, the statements met all requirements and they were prepared in accordance with accounting principles.

"That is exactly what you as the board want to see," Lester said.

As well, there was no management letter, he said.

Such a letter discusses findings and recommendations for improvements in internal control.

"That's never happened [before]," Lester said, citing NTI's "good controls."

Lester did note a large decline in the value of NTI's investments as of March 31.

But "it's still a pretty good year," he said.

As well, NTI doesn't owe any more money to the Nunavut Trust that every year gives money to NTI and the regional Inuit organizations.

The Nunavut Trust manages and invests the $1.114 billion settlement that Inuit received through the 1993 Nunavut Agreement.

In its early years, NTI borrowed more than $146 million for its operations and for those of the regional Inuit organizations.

This year, the regional organizations received $40 million between them, with $36 million going to NTI.

NTI board member, Olayuk Akesuk, who is also the president of the Qikiqtani Inuit Association, said, "we have gone a long way from where we were when NTI owed the Nunavut Trust."

"It's way better than before. I would like to congratulate NTI staff for the great work they have done."

The board was to have met in Pond Inlet, but the meeting was mainly held remotely on Zoom and broadcast live on Facebook. The next meeting convenes Oct. 24 in Iqaluit.