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The Vancouver Sun: LNG uncertainty leads to lower economic growth forecast

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The report says natural gas drilling and exploration has slowed down because of arising questions about the future of LNG in other parts of B.C.

In contrast, the author of the Vancouver Sun article, Mike Hager, makes reference to CEO of North Peace Savings and Credit Union, Mitchel Chilcott as saying in a written statement that “LNG and several other anticipated projects will have substantial and long-lasting impacts to our region, communities and membership.”

The Central 1 report backs its claim by citing Houston-based Apache Corp., which previously announced it was pulling out of its stakes in the $4.5 billion Kitimat LNG project, said to be in part due to pressure from an activist investor, the U.S. hedge fund Jana Partners LLC.

However, Apache’s 50 per cent partner in the project, Chevron, has said they’ll continue to drill in the Liard Basin and continue to work on surveying the route for the Pacific Trails pipeline.

Kitimat LNG was the first to gain a permit, seemingly most prepared, as site preparation is said to be well underway, but other players in the market have passed on permits from the National Energy Board in terms of aligning with natural gas buyers in the market.

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Idling mines and slower development has also been seen as a “key drag” on economic growth, according to the author of the Central 1 report, Bryan Yu.

Central 1 said in their written statement that the Peace River Region continues to be a leader in economic growth “driven by commodity sector production and exploration activity, enthusiasm over the potential of (LNG) and a strong housing sector.”

The reports concludes by claiming the region’s employment rate is expected to grow over the years, while home prices will increase 7 per cent in 2014 and by an average of 3 per cent per year into 2017.

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You can read the entire Vancouver Sun article here.

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With files from the Vancouver Sun

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