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Calgary & Alberta Economy

darwink

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The positive assessment is this: Alberta's total collapse is at the same time as Canada's, so programs that exist for all exist here. Imagine if nothing was happening elsewhere and Alberta's unemployment spiked to 15, 20%, and the province's budget had a $15 billion hole. How much slower the responses might be. How much more debate for federal support would be consumed with regional concerns. Today, Alberta is getting the national programs PLUS a to be announced sector specific program.

The depth of the hole also provides for a period of self reflection in the government: that the goal isn't to bring back the oil sands 8 million dream, but to get through the next 30 years without the oil sands turning into a sink hole. That reflection can lead to pivots, that a billion dollars a year to support the oil industry really means nothing due to the scale of the industry, but a billion a year to support tech, biotech, fintech, agri-tech and agri-food, from innovation to scale up would be huge, an incredible amount of support. That once tourism comes back, we can create new experiences that moves us up the value chain of destinations for conventions and winter travel.

The fiscal hole also gives a chance to look in the mirror, and be honest that to even sustain the budget that Kenney and crew wanted to implement over the next 3 years with massive cuts, that new revenue is needed.
 

Surrealplaces

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I was thinking more along the lines of more cranes for residential projects, i don't think we'll need more office space for a while. But i can see O&G companies filling those towers up again, more pipeline capacity means more projects and more drilling which means more engineers, geologists, etc working in Calgary. There is currently no growth in Canadian oil and gas because the pipelines are full and the price is low. If both of those things change i expect another boom in ~3 years, but i'm an optimist.
I believe there's reason for optimism for the upcoming years. Not right away, but down the road I think we're still in for another boom. We were booming before without the extra pipelines, and if a few pieces of the puzzle come together, things could really take off. Still an 'if', but possible for sure. If the U.S. becomes an importer again, that alone would really boost the industry....not sure when that will happen, but it's a possibility. Add in extra capacity to the coast, and new customers and you've got potential for things to take off.
 

Surrealplaces

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The positive assessment is this: Alberta's total collapse is at the same time as Canada's, so programs that exist for all exist here. Imagine if nothing was happening elsewhere and Alberta's unemployment spiked to 15, 20%, and the province's budget had a $15 billion hole. How much slower the responses might be. How much more debate for federal support would be consumed with regional concerns. Today, Alberta is getting the national programs PLUS a to be announced sector specific program.

The depth of the hole also provides for a period of self reflection in the government: that the goal isn't to bring back the oil sands 8 million dream, but to get through the next 30 years without the oil sands turning into a sink hole. That reflection can lead to pivots, that a billion dollars a year to support the oil industry really means nothing due to the scale of the industry, but a billion a year to support tech, biotech, fintech, agri-tech and agri-food, from innovation to scale up would be huge, an incredible amount of support. That once tourism comes back, we can create new experiences that moves us up the value chain of destinations for conventions and winter travel.

The fiscal hole also gives a chance to look in the mirror, and be honest that to even sustain the budget that Kenney and crew wanted to implement over the next 3 years with massive cuts, that new revenue is needed.
Very good point.
 

zagox

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The positive assessment is this: Alberta's total collapse is at the same time as Canada's, so programs that exist for all exist here. Imagine if nothing was happening elsewhere and Alberta's unemployment spiked to 15, 20%, and the province's budget had a $15 billion hole. How much slower the responses might be. How much more debate for federal support would be consumed with regional concerns. Today, Alberta is getting the national programs PLUS a to be announced sector specific program.

The depth of the hole also provides for a period of self reflection in the government: that the goal isn't to bring back the oil sands 8 million dream, but to get through the next 30 years without the oil sands turning into a sink hole. That reflection can lead to pivots, that a billion dollars a year to support the oil industry really means nothing due to the scale of the industry, but a billion a year to support tech, biotech, fintech, agri-tech and agri-food, from innovation to scale up would be huge, an incredible amount of support. That once tourism comes back, we can create new experiences that moves us up the value chain of destinations for conventions and winter travel.

The fiscal hole also gives a chance to look in the mirror, and be honest that to even sustain the budget that Kenney and crew wanted to implement over the next 3 years with massive cuts, that new revenue is needed.
My hopes for some unintended good consequences from this crisis ... I don't think all of these will happen but I'd be happy with a couple:
- Pipelines get built with less political interference because there are too many higher priority concerns. If Keystone XL is 1/3 finished by January 2021, would a President Biden really pull the plug on a massive infrastructure project underway in a time of high unemployment?
- US/Canada join an OPEC+ curtailment scheme that puts a sustainable floor under WTI. That, combined with completed pipelines, eventually puts a sustainable floor under WCS.
- Alberta has an exceptionally good public health response that highlights it as a safe destination for international migration and tourism.
- Federal/provincial infrastructure investment ramps up and Green Line gets built much faster and further than previously possible.
 

JonnyCanuck

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Let's hope that there is a genuine realization by the Liberal government, the NDP's, and all of the anti-fossil fuel groups that Canada is going to need enhanced revenue from a health and vibrant energy sector, if we are ever going to dig out of this massive debt. This will not be achieved with more emphasis on agriculture, mining, manufacturing or any other sector. AND it certainly won't be achieved by transitioning sooner to wind and solar power, as some have suggested. Outside of Canadians, who are we going to export that to?? :rolleyes:
 

Chowda7

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My hopes for some unintended good consequences from this crisis ... I don't think all of these will happen but I'd be happy with a couple:
- Pipelines get built with less political interference because there are too many higher priority concerns. If Keystone XL is 1/3 finished by January 2021, would a President Biden really pull the plug on a massive infrastructure project underway in a time of high unemployment?
- US/Canada join an OPEC+ curtailment scheme that puts a sustainable floor under WTI. That, combined with completed pipelines, eventually puts a sustainable floor under WCS.
- Alberta has an exceptionally good public health response that highlights it as a safe destination for international migration and tourism.
- Federal/provincial infrastructure investment ramps up and Green Line gets built much faster and further than previously possible.
If the Stampede gets cancelled this year they could probably speed up work on the C-train station, and 17th Ave as well.
 

Silence&Motion

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It will be interesting to see if there is increased desire (and government financial support) to bolster the manufacturing sector within post-industrial countries in the West. I think it has taken a lot of people by shock just how fragile global supply chains are and how dependent we are on a single totalitarian dictatorship for basic supplies. I wonder whether a focus on robustness and resiliency will now compete with the previous emphasis on cost efficiency. Concerns over job creation and national security may also become part of the conversation.
 

Surrealplaces

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It will be interesting to see if there is increased desire (and government financial support) to bolster the manufacturing sector within post-industrial countries in the West. I think it has taken a lot of people by shock just how fragile global supply chains are and how dependent we are on a single totalitarian dictatorship for basic supplies. I wonder whether a focus on robustness and resiliency will now compete with the previous emphasis on cost efficiency. Concerns over job creation and national security may also become part of the conversation.
I've been wondering the same thing. For the last three decades nobody has cared about China's political side, only that goods can be made their at a lower cost. Nations may need to rethink the whole idea of economic dependency, and make adjustments. Nothing radical, but changes that might offer better protection from global meltdowns.
 

Silence&Motion

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I've been wondering the same thing. For the last three decades nobody has cared about China's political side, only that goods can be made their at a lower cost. Nations may need to rethink the whole idea of economic dependency, and make adjustments. Nothing radical, but changes that might offer better protection from global meltdowns.
It's not just China either. The fact that the swabs we use for the COVID tests are manufactured in Northern Italy is a truely cruel irony. And we also have to deal with the threat that Trump will block US-manufactured medical supplies from being exported to Canada. In fact, our best protection against American protectionism is our own manufacturing capacities in terms of pulp and paper. So, even if we don't manufacture everything ourselves, we clearly benefit from being placed strongly in the middle of the global supply chain (as opposed to dangling at the end).
 

Social Justice

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I've been wondering the same thing. For the last three decades nobody has cared about China's political side, only that goods can be made their at a lower cost. Nations may need to rethink the whole idea of economic dependency, and make adjustments. Nothing radical, but changes that might offer better protection from global meltdowns.
In 80's and 90's when China was industrializing and western countries were de-industrializing and losing manufacturing jobs, the theory espoused by western elites was that, as China became more wealthy, they would move towards a more "democratic" and "liberal" country and society.

Obviously, that did not happen and the strategy has failed spectacularly.
 

UrbanWarrior

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The only big change in that arena is that their economy became more capitalist. Arguably, if anything, their government has become more authoritarian over the past 20 years.
 

JonnyCanuck

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This is getting scarier by the week. In early February, there was a little light at the end of the tunnel for Canadian oil & gas after 5 years of doom and gloom. Then, in the span of 2 months, the industry has had it's legs cut out from underneath. No one expects prices to stay this low for too long however when will they recover to $50+ per barrel for WCS …. and stay there....which is what the oil sands needs.
We need TMX and Keystone to push ahead full steam. That means the Liberals, NDP and all other political parties need to get their shoulders behind these projects. We also need to ban all imports of oil. If we don't get our economy going again in an upward trajectory, in the short to medium term (which includes energy) we don't have a hope in hell in reducing our massive deficit. If Trudeau can't sell that to all Canadians then it is another reason why he is an incompetent prime minister.
 

darwink

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The pipelines are going ahead. And no, we don't need to ban oil imports (it would make us poorer). As for the massive deficit, we really won't know until the fall what this really looks like. In the end it is just a deficit - we didn't go into this with massive debt (at the federal level at least) so we are fine. There is little rush - for now the focus should be on developing systems to allow for a sustainable opening, so we don't have to shut down a second time like northern Japan did.

For oil and gas, protecting the sustainable mid caps is the name of the game. All the little guys will be gone, and no matter how much the government tries to help they will be gone. Keeping them going until the summer so we can have an ordered process and fair valuation based on a maybe more realistic oil price is a good idea though. Few people are going to be lending to oil and gas.

Realistically the worst/best news for O&G in months was the Alberta Government investment in Keystone. No investment bank would issue debt at a reasonable price to them. A utility! It was too much risk. So the government had to step in. Sure it is great they are going ahead but that isn't a storm cloud on the horizon, that is the wave from perfect storm.
 

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