The province says it will restore summer ferry service between Bella Coola and Port Hardy after it cut a similar route in 2014 to save money.
Premier Christy Clark says the government and BC Ferries are looking for a new vessel that can provide seasonal service between the two Central Coast communities, with sailings to begin in the summer of 2018.
When the route was cut two years ago, tourism industry groups warned it would dampen efforts to encourage aboriginal tourism.
Keith Henry of Aboriginal Tourism Association of Canada says it’s a significant development that could be worth millions of tourism dollars.
He says the Mid-Coast Working Group, a partnership of tourism stakeholders, is working to ensure tourism development is sustainable.
Marketing will focus on the Great Bear Rainforest, and it’s hoped the upcoming visit by Prince William and his wife Kate will create an international buzz.
Premier Clark says the new service will be more direct and “higher-end” but adds the cost of the route must still be negotiated with BC Ferries.