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Canada’s Oil Future Could Be Offshore

Introduction

The election of a new, more leftist politician in the province of Alberta has some Canadian oil companies starting to look to investments outside of the oil sands province. Canadian Natural Resources (NYSE: CNQ), Canada’s largest heavy oil producer, has three quarters of its assets inside Alberta, but with the prospect of heavier taxation coming down the pike, Canadian Natural is considering a shift of resources, diverting more of its investment to non-Alberta projects. That could see more of a focus not just abroad, but also in the provinces of Saskatchewan and British Columbia.

But the future could also be bright for some of Canada’s eastern provinces.

Newfoundland and Labrador

The province of Newfoundland and Labrador on the Atlantic Coast is not normally thought of as a huge growth area for oil production. But the provincial government is looking to overhaul its tax regime in order to attract new investment. The exact terms, expected to be more enticing for the industry, should be revealed in a few weeks. Newfoundland Premier Paul Davis recently spoke at a conference and said that the terms his province will offer will be modeled after successful structures seen in Norway and other high production areas. Newfoundland has a lot riding on the prosperity of the industry, which could help plug a $1.1 billion deficit.

The signature project on offer is the Bay du Nord, a field discovered by Statoil (NYSE: STO) that could…

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