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Saturday, July 18, 2009

Manitoba top province to invest in oil and gas, Alberta dead last

Oil industry executives now see Manitoba as the best jurisdiction in Canada to invest in, while Alberta fell to 92nd out of 143 international jurisdictions, according to the Fraser Institute's Global Petroleum Survey 2009:

Manitoba has dethroned both Saskatchewan and Alberta as the most attractive Canadian province or territory for oil and gas investment, according to an international survey of petroleum executives and managers released today by independent research organization the Fraser Institute.

Saskatchewan, which was the top province in 2008, drops to the number two spot in Canada. But investors are most critical of Alberta, ranking the province as the least attractive among Canada provinces ranked for oil and gas investment. Aside from Manitoba and Saskatchewan, Alberta now also trails Nova Scotia, Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia, and Newfoundland and Labrador.…

"The survey results clearly show the industry's dissatisfaction with the Alberta government's misguided policies. Punitive royalty rates, a lack of consultation, and a growing anti-energy bias are common complaints about the Stelmach government," said Gerry Angevine, Fraser Institute senior economist and coordinator of the annual petroleum survey.…

Manitoba, the highest ranked province in 2009, is 21st internationally. Saskatchewan fell from 10th (of 81) in 2008 to 38th (of 143) worldwide. Nova Scotia ranked 54th, Ontario ranked 60th, Quebec 68th, British Columbia 71st, Newfoundland and Labrador 82nd, and Alberta 92nd.

Alberta's poor showing puts the province behind China, the Philippines, and Brazil as an attractive place to invest in upstream oil and gas development.

That's right, thanks to Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach's policy of taxing oil companies until every last Albertan is out of work, they would rather drill for oil in Ontario than Alberta.

Luckily, Wildrose Alliance leadership hopeful Danielle Smith has made reforming Alberta's royalty regime one of her top policy priorities. Let's hope Alberta will one day be seen as a great place to invest in oil and gas once more.

Posted by Jesse Kline on July 18, 2009 in Trade | Permalink


Too bad Manitoba has no oil and gas reserves. And don't start with the Bakken babble. That's a pipe dream.

Alberta has a lot more problems than the royalty regime. Every company I know of is having issues with ridiculously intrusive environmental, and safety regulations.

It seems like there's one safety supervisor/auditor for every worker. These people aren't improving the safety standards, in fact, they're creating bad working conditions.

The environmental policies are being steered by people with a vested interest in creating more complicated procedures. With a stroke of the pen, the president of Alberta Environment put millions into the pockets of his colleagues in the P Ag association. It's left a legacy of thousands of abandoned wells that have to be dug up and reclaimed. These wells were percectly acceptable until new regulations raised questions.

The EUB, and Alberta Environment need some serious housecleaning. Some new regislation, concerning liability of facility operators would help too. They need to take some of the onus off the guy digging a hole, and put more onus on the guy who buried a pipeline without proper documentation. As it stands, a project can be put at risk, because someone didn't bother to register a caveat, 10 years ago. No action is taken against that operator in our current system.

Are you listening Ms Smith? I'd make a great advisor, on oil and gas industry policies. I'd work for free, just to piss off the shysters I've been putting up with for 20 years.

Posted by: dp | 2009-07-18 7:25:56 PM

Ed Stelmach is a communist.

Posted by: Robert Seymour | 2009-07-18 11:37:41 PM

Of course he is. For all the complaining Ukranians do, about how they despise Stalin, and the Soviet Union, they all seem to lean to the far left.

Posted by: dp | 2009-07-18 11:45:57 PM

Stelmach should be tarred and feathered. We should also ship him back to Ukraine. No disrespect to Ukrainians, but Stelmach has amply demonstrated that he doesn't belong here.

Posted by: Werner Patels | 2009-07-19 12:44:26 AM

Keep this in mind the next time you think about voting PC or Liberal. Socialized "anything" does not work.

Posted by: The original JC | 2009-07-19 6:58:34 AM

Ed Stelmach, the gift that keps on giving.

Posted by: B | 2009-07-19 8:19:56 AM

Gary Doer's NDP government being prefered by a partisan Conservative Party think tank. It boggles the mind just how bad the Conservatives are.
Saying Stelmack is a communist is just avoidance -Fact is he is a Conservative and in a province that has granted him an unquestioned mandate (till now hopefully).
While the royalty fiasco is fairly new the massive spending increases have been the party policy since long before him.

Posted by: V. M. Smith | 2009-07-19 9:08:53 AM

Ed Stelmach, the gift that keps on giving.

Posted by: B | 2009-07-19 8:19:56 AM

Kind of like VD.

(I used to be a "PC" conservative, but no more. )

Posted by: The original JC | 2009-07-19 10:09:20 AM

Just remember, Ed is the first Edmonton based premier. He's been surrounded, his whole life, by anti-oilpatch people. He thinks he's speaking for all Albertans, but he isn't. He's speaking for his circle of associates, and they don't quite understand what makes the oilpatch tick.

He means well, but he has to learn which side his bread is buttered on. I'm just worried his learning process will drag us deeper into recession.

People talk about the perfect storm, well, it's hit southern Alberta with full force. Natural gas prices are the driving force. Companies rely on this revenue to finance other projects. They've invested too heavily in oilsands, and now their conventional reserves aren't keeping their other projects afloat.

I've heard Encana is talking about walking away from that new highrise in Calgary. What do you think will happen to the project now? There's a 30 foot hole in the ground already. Once a couple of big projects, like that one, go sour, the investment in Calgary will not seem so foolproof. What happens if there are 1 million square feet of vacant commercial property downtown? You can bet the residential market will follow suit. Who's the easiest to blame? You guessed it, the provincial government.

It's easy to sit back, and say Klein sold us down the river, but at least we had a boat that floated.

Posted by: dp | 2009-07-19 11:40:12 AM

But Klein's boat was also floating on the oil money.
As with his comarades Chevez and Ahmadinejad the Conservatives power was largely based on seizure of the private sector's wealth creation. There should have been enough for decades of decadance before it toppled, the latest Shiek just got more than the very greedy that proceeded.
Worst part is the oil price is going back up and I'll likley in a year or two have to hear more about how Alberta is so pro-freedom from conservative commentors. They will go back to ranting about socialist Ontario (which spends 42% less per capita on program spending, re statistics Canada 2007), and get great pats on the back from the conservative commentors for Alberta's leading edge fiscal conservatism once again.

Posted by: V. M. Smith | 2009-07-22 5:05:13 AM

Very interesting

Posted by: Bontan | 2009-12-08 7:17:59 AM

Good point

Posted by: Bontan | 2009-12-08 7:19:21 AM

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