The following are seven factors as to why Alberta is not capturing the full potential value of its developed natural resource. Without action, there will be plenty of prosperity left on the table never to be realized for current and future generations.
1. Global oil demand is increasing, and Canada needs to grow its market share. Instead it appears that from 2020 onward, growth in Canadian oil production will flat-line.
2. We’ve been selling oil at fire-sale prices for years because we don’t have the pipelines to diversify our customers and become free market sellers using global free trade, rather than order-takers from a single buyer. This has also reduced investor interest in Canada and cost our economy billions.
3. We have one customer: the USA. This is simply bad business. This is the first area in which we should be talking about diversification.
4. Compared to our top oil reserve peers around the world, our infrastructure and regulatory challenges make other jurisdictions more attractive for investment. This impacts job creation, exports, Canadian business investment, manufacturing, and many segments of the national economy.
5. Resources like the oilsands play a significant role in our economy. In 2010, 58.3% of Canada’s business investment, 61% of exports, and 46.2% of manufacturing were tied to our natural resources.
6. In 2013, the oilsands did business with more than 2,000 Canadian companies outside of Alberta. If Alberta oil grows its market share, it will grow the positive local economic impact in communities across Canada.
7. The upstream oil and gas sector provides more value added to the economy than most other Canadian sectors.