The Process


The parties have agreed to explore and design a Made-in-Nova Scotia Process for negotiations which will address the circumstances, needs and interests of all involved parties. The parties have negotiated the Framework Agreement which identifies the issues to be negotiated, goals, procedures, and a timetable for negotiations. The Framework Agreement also sets out the process for reaching final settlement.

The negotiations are being conducted in a structured and methodical manner. Typically, there are five major stages:

Stage 1 - Preliminary Discussions/Preparation
The three parties conduct research, establish negotiating teams and confirm their intent to enter into negotiations. This stage has been completed by the parties.

Stage 2 - Framework Agreement
The three parties negotiate a Framework Agreement, which identifies the issues to be negotiated, goals, procedures, and a timetable for negotiations. The Framework Agreement was signed on February 23, 2007 and the parties recently completed a four year review.

Stage 3 - Agreement in Principle or "Memorandum of Understanding"
(The parties are currently in this stage)


The three parties examine in detail the issues identified in the Framework Agreement. A Memorandum of Understanding describes all of the essential features of a final agreement or "Accord". A memorandum may address a complete package of issues, or the parties may choose to develop separate agreements for certain issues, including interim agreements if this is helpful.

Stage 4 - Final Agreement or "Accord" and Implementation Plans
Technical and legal issues are resolved. The Accord will be formally ratified.

Stage 5 - Implementation
The three parties will participate in an on-going forum to oversee implementation.