Canada looks for energy ties to Asia

Jan. 24, 2012 at 6:40 AM

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Jan. 24 (UPI) -- Canada is a global leader in mining and hydrocarbons with the potential to reach new markets in the Asia and Pacific region, the natural resource minister said.

Canadian Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver met with members of the Chamber of Commerce for British Columbia outlining ways his country can play a role in the global market, notably the Asia-Pacific region, his department said.

"Canada is one of the world's mining and energy giants and we're set for continued growth," Oliver said. "Our government is committed to developing the policy initiatives and making the targeted investments that will help to ensure our exploration, mining and energy industries continue to grow and prosper long into the future."

Oliver said the western provinces have a "huge" opportunity to grow through the Asia-Pacific market.

"Those opportunities represent the potential for hundreds of thousands of jobs in Canada and literally trillions of dollars in economic activity in Vancouver, in British Columbia and right across the country," he said.

After last week's decision by the U.S. government to postpone a permit for the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline, Ottawa threw its support behind plans to build the Northern Gateway pipeline to transit tar sands oil from Alberta to the west coast for deliveries to Asian markets.

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