Eighty per cent of survey respondents cited uncertain environmental regulations as a deterrent to investing in Alberta

Mario Toneguzzi is a Troy Media reporter based in CalgaryTexas is more than two times as attractive as Alberta for oil and gas investment, according to a survey of petroleum-sector executives released on Thursday by the public policy think-tank the Fraser Institute.

In a ranking of 20 North American jurisdictions, which included 15 U.S. states and five Canadian provinces, Texas came out on top with Alberta ranked 16th.

“Canada’s onerous and uncertain regulations, along with our dearth of pipeline capacity has created a competitiveness chasm between Canada and the United States – particularly between Alberta and Texas,” said Ashley Stedman, senior policy analyst at the Fraser Institute and co-author of the Canada-US Energy Sector Competitiveness Survey.

The report said that 80 per cent of survey respondents cited uncertain environmental regulations as a deterrent to investing in Alberta compared to only nine per cent for Texas. Also, 65 per cent of respondents identified regulatory duplication and inconsistencies as a deterrent to investing in Alberta compared to eight per cent for Texas, said the Fraser Institute.

Texas was followed in the rankings in order by Oklahoma, Kansas, Wyoming and the U.S. Gulf of Mexico region.

Rankings of other Canadian provinces were Saskatchewan (13), Newfoundland and Labrador (15), Manitoba (17) and British Columbia (19).

The report cited Colorado as the least-attractive jurisdiction with its 20th place ranking.

“An Alberta/Texas comparison demonstrates how results vary by region: 53 per cent of respondents identified taxation as a deterrent to investment in Alberta versus only 12 per cent for Texas. Overall, investors expressed heightened concern over taxation in Canada compared to the United States. The percentage of respondents indicating that taxation in general was deterring investment was, on average, 60 per cent for Canada compared to only 32 per cent for the United States,” said the report.

“The Alberta/Texas comparison also shows that 65 per cent of respondents identified regulatory duplication and inconsistencies as a deterrent to investment in Alberta compared to only eight percent for Texas. Overall, regulatory duplication and inconsistencies are a significant concern for investors in Canada compared to the United States. On average, 53 per cent of respondents indicated that this factor was a deterrent to investment for the Canadian provinces compared to only 31 per cent for the United States.”

© Calgary’s Business


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