Apply for Future Fisher Program

If you are a licensed lobster fisher in Prince Edward Island or are working towards ownership of a lobster fleet, you may be eligible for support through the Future Fisher Program. This program offers mentoring, training and financial assistance to assist inexperienced fishers to become better positioned for success in the PEI lobster fishery.

Applications will be accepted until March 31, 2021 and are reviewed first-come, first-served. If the number of applications exceeds budget allocation, some applications may not receive program funding.

Am I eligible for Future Fisher funding?

To participate in the Future Fisher program you must:

  • Be a resident of PEI, age 18 years or older
  • Have purchased a class ‘A’ lobster licence, after January 1, 2009
  • Hold the licence, or working towards ownership, for your fleet. (One applicant per fleet only.)

If you do not own a core fishing licence, including lobster, but are working towards ownership within three years, you may enter the program and receive funding for training. Contact Future Fisher Program Officer directly (contact details below) for more information.

What support is offered through the Future Fisher Program?

The Future Fisher Program includes three components:

  1. Coaching, facilitated by a program officer
  2. Training involving all aspects of the lobster fishery, and
  3. Reduced interest for three consecutive years for the cost of acquiring a fishing enterprise.

Note: To receive interest relief, you must actively participate in and complete milestones of the coaching and training components.

How much financial assistance is offered?

If you have borrowed money from a recognized financial institution to purchase fishing related assets, i.e. chartered bank, Credit Union, or PEI Lending Agency, you may be eligible to receive interest relief - up to $3,000 per year for three years for a maximum contribution of $9,000.

Interest relief on loans related to acquiring a lobster enterprise is calculated as follows:

  • Grade 12 or equivalent completed – receive 2% contribution per year on loans up to $150,000
  • Grade 12 or equivalent yet to be completed – receive:
    • 1% contribution per year on loans up to $150,000; plus
    • $1,000 towards cost for training, cost shared 50 per cent with the department.

Please note: If you achieve Grade 12 during the three-year tax relief period, you may request a change in your contribution percentage.

How do I apply for the Future Fisher Program?

* You must submit your application prior to any financial commitment being made under this program.

Submit your completed application with all relevant documentation.

  1. Download the application form, or
  2. Click on the button below to complete the application and upload documents online.

Following submission, the program officer will contact you to discuss your application and related documents.

What do I need to complete the online form?

Your application must be complete and all required documentation attached before it will be reviewed.

You will be asked to enter information and upload documentation as follows:

  • Detailed contact information
  • Licence Information
    • Lobster Fishing Area (LFA)
    • Port of purchase
    • Home port
  • Financing information including:
    • Lending institution name and branch location
    • Loan officer/account manager
    • Exact name of licence holder
    • Amount of loan and interest rate
    • Loan agreement or a letter (copy or photo) from your lending institution outlining the initial date as well as terms and conditions of your fishery loan
  • Relevant training courses acquired, including:
    • Fishing Master IV
    • Radio Operator's Certificate-Maritime Commercial (ROC-MC)
    • Small Vessel Operator and Proficiency (SVOP)
    • M.E.D A1 Basic safety
    • First Aid
  •  Education status – If you have Grade 12 or equivalent, upload diploma or grade transcripts

You will be asked to complete a CAPTCHA exercise to confirm you are a human visitor and you will be invited to review and print your information before you submit your form.

How long will it take to complete the online form?

If you have the information gathered and documents ready to upload, you can complete the form in less than 30 minutes.

What else do I need to know about this program?

The Future Fisher Program includes the following conditions:

  1. Upon approval under the program, a letter and contractual agreement will be forwarded to you which, when accepted, will constitute a contract between yourself and the department.
  2. If you sell the fishing enterprise at any time during the three-year approval period, you may be required to re-pay all or a portion of the interest relief.
  3. The department may refuse to consider an application if there is evidence of misrepresentation of pertinent information or if the application does not conform to the spirit of the program.
  4. In any matter of difference between the Minister and the applicant throughout the life of the project, the decision of the Minister will be final.

Please note: In order to receive funds from the Province of Prince Edward Island, you must first register as a vendor. Once you are approved for the Future Fisher Program, submit a completed the Vendor Registration Form.

Who can I contact for information about the Future Fisher Program?

Program Officer, Future Fisher Program
Michelle Hewitt
PEI Department of Agriculture & Fisheries
PO Box 1180, Montague, PE C0A 1R0
Tel: (902) 838-0819 Fax: (902) 838-0975
Toll Free: 1-877-407-0187
Email: mahewitt@gov.pe.ca

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General Inquiries

Department of Agriculture and Fisheries
PO Box 1180
548 Main Street
Montague, PE   C0A 1R0
Phone: (902) 838-0910
Fax: (902) 838-0975

Agriculture Information Desk
1-866-PEI FARM (734-3276)

peiextension@gov.pe.ca