ARCHIVED - Minister Raitt Highlights the Importance of Market Diversification to Canada’s Economy

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July 27, 2012

TORONTO — The Honourable Lisa Raitt, Minister of Labour, today welcomed the National Energy Board’s approval of the Enbridge application to reverse the flow of the Line 9A pipeline. The decision will bring more Western Canadian crude to eastern markets and reduce dependence on imported oil.

“Energy is a matter of national importance and our Government welcomes efforts to better utilize our immense energy assets for the benefit of all Canadians,” said Minister Raitt. “In this respect, the expansion and diversification of our energy markets, including within Canada, is one of our priorities.”

Following a comprehensive technical review and extensive public consultation, the National Energy Board deemed the reversal of Line 9A to be in the public interest. The pipeline will carry oil from Sarnia to Westover, Ontario.

Canada’s existing pipeline capacity to ship crude oil is primarily limited to accessing the United States market. The National Energy Board decision, which reverts the pipeline back to its original purpose, will help achieve two goals: greater market access for Canadian crude oil and greater energy self-sufficiency for Canada.

There is a tremendous opportunity for Canada to capitalize on its resource development potential to stimulate jobs and growth in a period of global economic uncertainty.

“Energy is key to supporting the standard of living and quality of life for all Canadians,” said Minister Raitt. “Over the past five years, the oil and gas industry has contributed an average of $22 billion a year to government revenues — $22 billion a year to help pay for everything, from education and health care to roads and bridges.”

“The National Energy Board is a strong, independent expert regulator and makes decisions at arms-length from government,” said Minister Raitt. “The Harper Government is committed to ensuring that pipeline projects proceed in a manner that is environmentally responsible, economically feasible and socially beneficial.”

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