Vive Le Canada

Canada's Trade Commissioners: Opening Doors for Canada's Oil and Gas Abroad
Date: Monday, November 07 2005
Topic:


Embassy, November 2nd, 2005

FEATURE
By International Trade Minister Jim Peterson

Canada's Trade Commissioners: Opening Doors for Canada's Oil and Gas Abroad

There is much excitement about Canada's oil and gas industry these days, and for good reason. As the world's appetite for this commodity soars, Canada is well-placed to meet the demand.

This industry, which comprises nearly 2,300 businesses, is a cornerstone of our national economy, providing tens of thousands of direct and indirect jobs, and fast-becoming a magnet for international investment and major trade opportunities.

The numbers tell the story. We are the third-largest producer of natural gas in the world, the eighth-largest producer of crude oil, and a global supplier of innovative equipment and services that underpin this industry. Every day, we produce 2.4 million barrels of oil and 21 billion cubic feet of natural gas, nearly 50 per cent of which is bound for the United States.


In fact, the United States is our biggest customer: Canada is the top exporter of natural gas, crude oil and refined products to the American market. In fact, eight per cent of the oil consumed in the U.S. comes from Canada. But Canada is looking to expand our exports around the world, including to growing economies like India and China. In addition, Canadian companies have major international operations in countries such as the UK, Yemen, Libya, Malaysia and Côte d'Ivoire.

A big part of this industry's success rests with Canada's significant oil reserves, particularly our oil sands. Our reserves rank second in the world, topped only by Saudi Arabia. The vast untapped onshore and offshore energy supplies in Alberta, British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Atlantic Canada and the Arctic, along with several extensive pipeline projects on the horizon, mean that Canada is in an excellent position to service a broad share of the global market in the years to come.

Investors around the world are taking notice. Between 1996 and 2004, total oil sands investment was $36 billion, a figure that is expected to reach $81 billion by 2015. The Atlantic Canada offshore oil and gas industry is attracting the attention of investors in the U.S., U.K. and Norway, with total expected expenditures of up to $55 billion over the next two decades.

We are also well-known for providing the specialized equipment and services that are helping companies at home and abroad excel in the global oil and gas market. Canadian companies have carved out a solid niche as a top supplier of cutting-edge oil and gas equipment and services in a wide range of geographic areas. Our companies lead the world in reservoir analysis, enhanced oil recovery, prospecting equipment, safety techniques, education and training, and advanced drilling technology. In fact, "made-in-Canada" equipment and services are currently being used in over 100 countries.


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