The smoking gun for Canada’s weak economic growth? A collapse in energy and resource investment – by Heather Exner-Pirot (The Hub – May 2, 2024)


The number of major natural resource projects completed between 2015 and 2023 declined by 36.4 percent

There’s a lot of hand-wringing going on in Canada these days as we try to figure out how our productivity, economic growth, and per capita GDP have sunk so badly. If you’re looking for a smoking gun, look no further than the precipitous decline in investment in Canada’s resource sector.

Canada’s resource and energy sector suffered two hits in 2015. One was the global commodity bust. The other was the election of the Trudeau Liberal government, which was intent on transforming the Canadian economy from its rollercoaster dependence on global commodity prices to one built on a more resilient and scalable knowledge economy. As Prime Minister Justin Trudeau articulated to his audience at the World Economic Forum in 2016, “My predecessor wanted you to know Canada for its resources. Well, I want you to know Canadians for our resourcefulness.”

Paired with this thinking has been a series of punishing policies and regulations that stymied growth and investment in energy and resources. Amongst those on what has become a very long list are: the Impact Assessment Act, the oil tanker moratorium, the moratorium on offshore Arctic oil and gas licensing, industrial carbon pricing, the UNDRIP Action Plan, rejection of the Northern Gateway pipeline, methane regulations, Clean Fuel Regulations,…

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