For Immediate Release
The Stelmach government continues to fiddle with investment rules and a Global Investment Survey revealed Alberta to be an uncompetitive place to do business. This ranking encompasses the reasons behind the lower levels of economic activity, building permits, and employment rates. Meanwhile, his MLA’s and Ministers that should be primarily responsible for reversing these trends seem focused on ill-advised parenting advice and bikini car washes.
A Global Petroleum Survey yesterday announced Alberta ranks 92 out of 143 jurisdictions and dead last of the Provinces in Canada. Premier Stelmach announced an extension of a royalty incentive plan for one year, previously announced in the spring. Unfortunately, the original proposal hasn’t helped drilling rates as evidenced by the historically low drilling levels that continue. In fact, less than 10% of rigs available are working in Alberta right now which is a multi-year low. Further, land sales in the Province total just over $100 million this year versus the almost $3.5 billion in 2006 and $178 million just last week in BC. Land acquisition is the ultimate leading indicator of future activity for without the land to drill upon, there is no drilling. With no drilling, the impact of these incentives is small. The NRF also takes away alot of the cash flow from current wells that would have been able to finance future drilling.
Interim Leader Paul Hinman commented “For the first time in memory Alberta is losing people to Saskatchewan, a province that under Premier Brad Wall is experiencing economic surplus while Alberta under Premier Ed Stelmach is experiencing economic deficits. This isn't market failure. This is government failure!”
“This is another revision of their New Royalty Framework and I don’t think I have enough fingers to count the number of revisions.” Mr. Hinman continued, “Albertans and industry need some form of certainty in planning their future and the Stelmach PC’s only provide instability. I’m looking forward to the bye-election campaign in Calgary Glenmore where Albertans will have the chance to send Ed a message!”
The Wildrose Alliance calls for the cancellation of the NRF and to bring back the former Royalty Framework that led to over-flowing government coffers rather than empty cupboards. The old system provided healthy employment levels where anyone who wanted a job could get a job. The stability of the former Royalty Framework brought billions of dollars of investment into the Province. Alberta truly had an advantage with low taxes, fully funded health care and education, a strong economy, and cared for its’ seniors.
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