NDP promises up to 4000 jobs with Petrochemicals program
by Crystal Laderas Posted Feb 1, 2016 11:35 am MDT Last Updated Feb 1, 2016 at 3:56 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Government of Alberta Twitter NDP promises up to 4,000 jobs with Petrochemicals program The NDP government is taking aim at developing the petrochemical sector as a way to create thousands of jobs in Alberta and attract billions in investment.On Monday morning, the province announced the new Petrochemicals Diversification Program which will encourage companies to invest in new facilities by providing royalty credits.“This program builds on the royalty review panel’s recommendation for a value-added natural gas strategy to support further upgrading and production of higher-value energy products in Alberta,” states Energy Minister Margaret McCuaig-Boyd in a news release.The province says it will create up to 3,000 new positions during construction and another 1,000 jobs once operations begin. It’s expected to attract between $3 billion and $5 billion in investment.“Today’s commitment to diversification in the petrochemical sector is part of the government’s economic action plan—a plan to create jobs, diversify our economy and add more value to our resources,” states Deron Bilous, Minister of Economic Development and Trade.Through the $500 million program, the government will award royalty credits to certain petrochemical facilities through a a competitive application program. Credits will be awarded once projects are completed and feedstock consumption begins.The Chair of the Alberta Industrial Heartland Association, Ed Gibbons, says this should be good for the long term.“We’ve got to get the engineers working in Calgary and we’ve got to keep the contractors and construction people working in our area. And we’ve got to keep people working afterwards that have gone through instrumentation and other technologies that are working in our plants. So it’s keeping the dollars within our boundaries,” says Gibbons.The province notes that petrochemical facilities don’t directly benefit from royalty credits because they don’t pay them, but they can be traded or sold to an oil or natural gas producer. Those credits can be used towards producers’ royalty payments to the government.