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Oil and gas sector applauds new Alberta premier's many pro-business pledges

Last Updated Apr 17, 2019 at 8:36 am PDT

Tim McMillan, Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers President and CEO, speaks during a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Monday, Feb. 26, 2018. The Alberta oilpatch is applauding the election of United Conservative Party leader Jason Kenney in Tuesday's provincial election.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang

CALGARY — The Alberta oilpatch is applauding the provincial election win by Jason Kenney and his United Conservatives.

The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers offered congratulations and welcomed the UCP’s commitment to making regulatory, economic and fiscal policy reforms.

It says it endorsed UCP election promises to cut the corporate tax rate to eight per cent from 12 per cent, develop a natural gas strategy, reduce red tape and complete a review of the Alberta Energy Regulator within the first 180 days.

In a morning report, analysts at Desjardins Energy Research agreed the election results were a “positive development” for the oil and gas sector.

They add, however, that the province’s difficulty in moving oil to market due to a lack of pipeline capacity — blamed for steep discounts in western Canadian crude prices last fall — will remain a major thorn in the side of the new government.

The TSX capped energy index, which tracks oil and gas company stock prices, was up almost one per cent in early trading Wednesday morning, led by gains by many Canadian oil and gas producers including Suncor Energy Inc. and Imperial Oil Ltd. and a strengthening U.S. benchmark oil price.

CAPP points out that the UCP has also pledged to spend up to $30 million to combat misleading news reports about the industry, and to create a “war room” to examine foreign-funded anti-oil campaigns.

“CAPP is encouraged by premier-elect Jason Kenney’s commitment to the oil and natural gas industry and looks forward to working constructively with the UCP to ensure the province meets its energy goals,” it said.

Companies mentioned in this article: (TSX:SU, TSX:IMO)

The Canadian Press