CALGARY, AB (August 28, 2015): A timeline for the royalty review consultations is welcome, but despite membership of the panel, it’s clear the review will continue to put investment in Alberta’s economy at risk as substantial royalty hikes remain the most likely outcome, the Wildrose Official Opposition said today.
Wildrose Leader Brian Jean welcomed the addition of Peter Tertzakian as a member of the panel, but said the cloud of the review hanging over the economy is already doing damage.
“With Alberta facing unprecedented economic challenges both inside and outside our borders, we need a government that brings stability and confidence to the economy,” Jean said. “Locking the current framework in place until end of 2016, though a minor concession, does little to provide long-term stability and investment to our province and energy industry. It’s been NDP policy for years to increase royalties, the finance minister is banking on it, and it would be naïve to expect any other outcomes.”
Several members of the NDP cabinet have advocated for royalty increases in the past, while Finance Minister Joe Ceci has said he’s planning for royalty changes.
Wildrose Shadow Finance Minister Derek Fildebrandt said Albertans are looking for leadership that doesn’t work against our economy, but advocates for it.
“We’ve seen the government pile on with risky economic experiments such as higher taxes, a 50 per cent increase to the minimum wage, and exploring new carbon tax and cap-and-trade schemes,” Fildebrandt said. “This royalty review is just another tip on the scales as Alberta is dealing with $40 oil and unstable markets overseas.”