Premier Alison Redford speaking at the signing of the Letter of Intent with the state of Punjab.
ALBERTA Premier Alison Redford this week opened a new trade office in New Delhi to expand trade and commerce, and support cultural ties between Alberta and India.
Alberta and India benefit from a long-standing relationship in trade and investment. Alberta’s new trade office in New Delhi will play a critical role in continuing to build this relationship by providing on-the-ground resources and connecting Alberta and India companies.
“We know there is strong opportunity and interest from all sides to increase the trade and investment relationship between Alberta and India. This new office will help us deliver on our Building Alberta Plan to create those new trade opportunities while attracting investment, economic growth and jobs to Alberta,”
Alberta’s exports to India have averaged more than $102 million per year and our diversified economy includes vibrant agriculture, aerospace, engineering, education, and information and communications technology sectors. Our trade in this region has only begun to scratch the surface with much more room to expand and grow.
The opening of the Alberta-India trade office builds on Redford’s participation at Petrotech 2014. There, more than 20 Alberta-based energy companies are finding better ways to tap into the Indian market. It also helps solidify agricultural agreements like those signed earlier this week with the states of Meghalaya and Punjab.
Redford also met with India’s Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Dr. Veerappa Moily.
She said: “As part of our Team Alberta trade mission to India this week, we had an opportunity to meet directly with India’s Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas while at the Petrotech 2014 conference. Our bilateral meeting was an important step forward in opening the vast Indian market to Alberta’s resources, expertise and exports.
“Our discussion focused on many areas of mutual interest. Dr. Moily was particularly keen on discussing the potential for exports of bitumen directly to India, as well as the potential for Indian companies to become strategic partners in developing Alberta’s oilsands, building off the agreement signed between Indian Oil Corporation Limited and the Alberta Petroleum Marketing Corporation last fall. India is an important emerging market and the potential for the country to be a new market for our oil and gas is enormous.
“Dr. Moily and I also had a lengthy discussion about shale gas development, focused on Alberta’s technical and regulatory expertise in this area. We spoke about the potential for a formal agreement between Alberta and India in the future, and I intend to pursue this aggressively over the next year.
“As one of the world’s fastest growing economies, with the world’s largest middle class, India’s potential as a key long-term export market for Alberta is undeniable.
A historic agreement was signed on Monday between Alberta and the State of Punjab to increase cooperation and enhance trade and investment activities between the two jurisdictions.
The agreement focuses on aspects of agriculture and animal genetics, will help increase trade in the areas of dairy production and swine genetics, and establish an Agricultural Working Group (AWG) to encourage communication on projects of importance.
“Alberta has strong economic and cultural ties with Punjab and today’s agreement will build on those ties and strengthen our agricultural sectors. A key part of our Building Alberta Plan is opening new markets for Alberta’s resources. This agreement will help us do just that,” said Redford.
The agreement builds on a similar agreement signed with the state of Meghalaya, India, on the first day of meetings of the trade mission led by Redford. Alberta and Punjab have a strong collaborative relationship and have previously established ties in agriculture, animal husbandry and education.
Alberta has a large Sikh community that contributes actively to political, social and business activities throughout the province.