Canada: B.C. Boosts Natural Gas Industry

To stimulate job creation and industry growth in the oil and gas sector, the province of British Columbia will make $120 million in royalties available for new road and pipeline projects under the Infrastructure Royalty Credit Program (IRCP).

New investments in infrastructure projects will increase industry’s access to promising resource areas, and support year-round work in exploration and production, providing well-paying jobs and business opportunities in northeast British Columbia.

Since 2004, the Province has awarded over $830 million in royalties to eligible oil and gas companies through IRCP, resulting in more than 200 new or upgraded all-season roads and pipeline projects in B.C. over the past decade. These projects represent a total capital investment of more than $1.9 billion, without direct cost to government.

The program requires oil and gas companies to fund the entire cost of an approved infrastructure project, such as a road. Once completed, the companies are then eligible to recover up to 50 per cent of the project’s costs. This approach stimulates year-round activity and generates additional royalty revenue to the Province.

Oil and gas companies can apply for the latest instalment of IRCP until April 16, 2014. Applications will be ranked according to their potential benefits with approval going to the projects which demonstrate the highest economic benefits to British Columbia.

Minister of Natural Gas Development Rich Coleman said: “The Infrastructure Royalty Credit Program continues to play an important role in helping natural gas and oil companies make significant investments in roads and pipeline infrastructure. The program gives an incentive to companies to capitalize on our resources while giving a fair return to the owners of our resources; British Columbians.”

Press Release, February 26, 2014; Image: gov.bc.ca

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