Quebec eyes exports of oils sand crude, LNG from 2017-18
By Silvia Antonioli
LONDON Nov 3 (Reuters) - Canada's Quebec province could start exporting crude from oil sands and also liquefied natural gas to Asia and Europe from 2017-2018, as buyers search for alternative suppliers to Russia, Quebec's energy minister said.
The standoff between Russia and the West over Ukraine has increased Europe's quest for alternative suppliers of oil and gas and Canada's exports to Europe have already started to pick up in the last few months.
In September, oil sands giant Suncor exported its first-ever cargo of Western Canadian crude to Europe, although since then crude price differentials have narrowed and Suncor said future shipments would depend on whether the economics were favourable.
A recent EU decision to scrap a plan to label Canadian tar sands oil as highly polluting has helped pave the way for more Canadian exports to Europe.
Quebec hopes the development of new projects will allow it to start exports of oils sands from 2017 and liquefied natural gas (LNG) from 2018.
"People don't want to be stuck with the Russians any more. So I think that there are some possibilities to export to Europe," Quebec's minister of energy and natural resources Pierre Arcand said in an interview on Monday.
KEY PROJECTS Continued...