The Athabasca communities, Cameco and Areva Resources Canada have signed an agreement built on the existing impact management deal established in 1999 to develop uranium resources in Canada’s Athabasca Basin.

The Ya’Thi Néné (Lands of the North in Dene) agreement will confirm the continued support of communities associated with the Cigar Lake, McClean Lake, as well as Rabbit Lake uranium mining operations.

It has been structured on five pillars of workforce development, business development, community engagement, environmental stewardship, and community investment.

Cameco president and CEO Tim Gitzel said: "By working with industry, people living in the north have found ways to enhance the capacity and vitality of their communities while protecting their traditional values and lands."

"People living in the north have found ways to enhance the capacity and vitality of their communities while protecting traditional values and lands."

The latest agreement builds on the existing relationships between Cameco, Areva and the three First Nation communities of Black Lake, Fond du Lac and Hatchet Lake, in addition to the four communities of Stony Rapids, Wollaston Lake, Uranium City and Camsell Portage.

Areva Resources Canada president and CEO Vincent Martin said: "This agreement further solidifies our longstanding collaboration with these communities.

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"It speaks to our joint vision and commitment to the prosperity of northern Saskatchewan for decades to come."

Under the terms of the agreement, the partners will continue the hiring preference for residents of the Athabasca communities for the Cigar Lake, McClean Lake and Rabbit Lake operations.

Preference for community owned businesses will also be continued to meet service requirements for Cameco and Areva operations.

As part of the agreement, Cameco and Areva will provide annual production-based payments to a community-administered trust to be used for initiatives that promote the health and wellbeing of residents in the region.

The agreement will be in force until the existing Athabasca Basin operations of Cameco and Areva are decommissioned.