CAPP Projects Upstream Oil and Natural Gas Investment Will Reach $40 Billion in 2023
March 1, 2023 (Calgary, Alberta)
The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) is forecasting oil and natural gas investment in upstream production will hit $40.0 billion in 2023, surpassing pre-Covid investment levels. That represents $4.0 billion, or 11 per cent, more in additional spending across Canada’s economy than the prior year (all figures in Canadian dollars).
“Investment into Canada’s oil and natural gas industry circulates back into the economy, benefiting all Canadians,” says Lisa Baiton, CAPP President & CEO. “The expected $40 billion of investment this year will be spent with businesses across the country, including hundreds of which are Indigenous-owned, support hundreds of thousands of jobs, and direct new spending towards improving environmental performance and emission-lowering technologies, such as carbon capture.”
“In addition, the oil and natural gas production from this level of industry spending will continue to generate tens of billions of dollars in royalty and tax revenues to governments to support investment into our hospitals, schools, social programs and infrastructure projects across the country,” adds Baiton.
Producers are expected to remain focused on disciplined investment with the increased spending going towards maintenance and incremental growth projects while also managing inflationary pressures which are impacting the entire supply chain. Additional spending is also expected to go towards environmental protection and emission reduction technologies such as advancing the development of carbon capture utilization and storage (CCUS). A report issued by BMO Capital markets showed Canadian oil and natural gas producers have invested an average of $1.2 billion annually since 2012 into research and development, much of that focused on reducing emissions. The report estimates in 2022 that investment rose to $1.4 billion and could exceed $2 billion by 2025. In addition, Canada’s upstream oil and natural gas industry is the largest investor in environmental protection, spending over $3.0 billion annually in areas such as biodiversity habitat protection, air quality management and water protection.
Conventional oil and natural gas capital investment for 2023 is forecast at $28.5 billion, while oil sands investment is expected to reach $11.5 billion.
The $40.0 billion mark represents the third straight year of consistent growth in upstream investment, delivering over 80 per cent growth since the 2020 low of $22.0 billion reached during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The year 2023 may be one of the most pivotal moments in time for Canada’s oil and natural gas industry. With an emerging liquefied natural gas export industry, the expected completion of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, and billions of dollars in emissions reduction investments waiting to be unlocked, Canada is positioned to play a much larger role in providing responsibly produced energy resources to the world,” adds Baiton“To capture this opportunity, industry and all levels of government will need to work collaboratively on critical pieces of policy to create the conditions for Canada’s oil and natural gas industry to continue to thrive for decades to come.”
In Alberta, investment is expected to reach $28.0 billion in 2023, representing about 70 per cent of all upstream oil and natural gas investment nationally. The growth in investment is being driven both in the conventional and oil sands sectors.
Changing and growing global markets for natural gas have translated into stronger natural gas prices over the past year. Producers in British Columbia are expected to grow investment in the province by about $1.0 billion in 2023, reaching a total of $7.2 billion. Investment in the province is expected to be helped by the recent agreements signed by the Province of British Columbia with several Indigenous Nations which satisfies the courts, establishes a process to manage cumulative effects and provides for resource development authorizations and a path towards long-term sustainable development.
In 2023, the province is expected to maintain investment of about $2.7 billion compared to about $2.6 billion in 2022.
In Newfoundland and Labrador, offshore investment is expected to remain relatively flat at $1.3 billion in 2023. In 2022, Canada’s offshore development showed positive signs with the federal government’s environmental assessment approval of the potential Bay du Nord project as well as the announced restart of the West White Rose Project. Offshore investment in Canada is not growing at the same pace as the broader Canadian oil and natural industry or the global offshore industry, although Canada’s offshore holds significant potential with some of the lowest emission oil in the world as well as its proximity to global markets. The pending investment decision on the Bay du Nord project, and upcoming exploration programs will be critical to the future of Newfoundland and Labrador’s offshore industry.
Additional quotes from Lisa Baiton, President and CEO:
- “Major energy infrastructure projects under construction, like the Trans Mountain expansion, are incredibly important to Canada reaching its potential as a provider of secure energy to our trading partners. The completion of Trans Mountain will enable Canada to export nearly 900 thousand barrels of oil per day to world markets, helping to ensure Canadians get greater value for their natural resources while significantly increasing our role in the global energy market.”
- “Reaching pre-Covid levels of investment is a significant milestone, signaling that the upstream oil and natural gas industry is continuing to grow investment to develop Canadian energy. As countries around the world struggle with the energy crisis, Canada’s oil and natural gas production is becoming incredibly important to helping meet global needs while providing a stable supply of energy for Canadians and driving increased investment into our economy.”
- “A secure energy transition requires investment into the current energy system concurrently with growing alternatives. In this transition we should be investing in the best forms of energy to meet growing demand. That list includes Canadian oil and natural gas which is produced with some of the highest environmental, human rights and emissions standards anywhere in the world.”
- “Globally, LNG is one of the fastest growing sources of energy and Canada is one of the few stable and democratic countries that have the reserves and capacity to become an exporter of natural gas for decades to come. One of the most effective ways Canada can help lower global greenhouse gas emissions and enhance global energy security is by exporting our lower emission LNG to countries that are relying on coal or Russian natural gas to power their economies.”
The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) is the trusted voice for companies, large and small, that explore for, develop and produce natural gas and oil throughout Canada. CAPP’s member companies produce about 80 per cent of Canada’s natural gas and oil. CAPP’s associate members provide a wide range of services that support the upstream oil and natural gas industry. Together CAPP’s members and associate members are a solution-oriented partner to Canada and the world’s needs for safe, secure, reliable, affordable and responsibly produced energy, and an important part of a national industry with revenues from oil and natural gas production of about $116 billion a year. CAPP supports industry efforts to continue to reduce upstream GHG emissions and play a role in support of Indigenous participation and prosperity. As a non-partisan organization, CAPP works with all governments and all parties to ensure that our industry is long-standing.
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