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article imageChina Grabs Big Stake in Canada's Oilsands

By Kevin Jess     Sep 1, 2009 in Business
Asia's largest oil company, PetroChina is buying the holdings in the MacKay River and Dover fields from Canadian firm Athabasca Oil Sands giving China a 60 percent stake.
It is expected that the two fields hold about five billion barrels of oil, and the Canadian government is expected to back the deal reports BBC News.
It amounts to a $2 billion stake in a giant reserve of "dirty oil" that Americans increasingly find unworthy of fuelling their vehicles says Kelowna.com. Also, it's the largest investment by the company in Canadian energy to date.
Canada’s Alberta oil sands hold the world’s second-largest crude reserves, but the cost of extraction is high. The process of extracting oil from the sand is very labour and energy intensive requiring world oil prices to be above $80 per barrel in order to be viable say analysts.
Kelowna.com claims that sources in Washington are saying American politicians will not be happy "at having a massive supply of secure energy on their northern doorstep slipping under Chinese ownership."
Canada's oil sands are estimated to hold a total 173 billion barrels of oil, and some put the estimated reserves as high as 1.7 trillion barrels.
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