Texas Best Global Jurisdiction for Oil and Gas Development

Vancouver, Canada (January 26, 2018) — Canada’s independent Fraser Institute has once again identified Texas as the most attractive jurisdiction in the world for oil and gas investment, reclaiming the top spot from Oklahoma in an annual global survey of petroleum-sector executives. After Texas, Oklahoma was ranked second. The study was released Nov. 28 by the public policy think tank.
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“Texas and Oklahoma have, for years, been seen as the most attractive jurisdictions in the world for oil and gas investors—proof that sound regulatory policies and stable environmental protections help attract scarce investment dollars even when commodity prices are down,” said Kenneth Green, the Fraser Institute’s senior director of natural resource studies and co-author of the 2017 Global Petroleum Survey.

This year’s survey ranks 97 jurisdictions worldwide based on their barriers to investment—taxation, costly regulatory obligations, and uncertainty over environmental regulations—and on the size of oil and gas reserves. This year, six U.S. states are included in the top 10 jurisdictions around the world. They include Texas, 1; Oklahoma, 2; North Dakota, 3; West Virginia, 5; Kansas, 6; and Wyoming, 9.

The 10 least attractive jurisdictions for oil and gas investment are Yemen, France, Cambodia, California, Indonesia, Ecuador, Iraq, Libya, Bolivia, and lastly, Venezuela. Among the 15 jurisdictions with the largest petroleum reserves worldwide, Texas is No. 1. Following are the United Arab Emirates; Alberta, Canada; Kuwait; and Egypt. Among regions, Europe finished second to the U.S., followed by Canada and Australia. Globally, every region except Africa, Canada, Latin America, and the Caribbean experienced declines in investment attractiveness, according to the Fraser survey.

“With oil and gas investors losing confidence around the world, it’s crucial for policymakers to pursue sound regulatory and tax regimes—and perhaps most importantly, stable environmental protections—that attract, not deter, petroleum investments,” Green said. The Global Petroleum Survey is sent annually to petroleum industry executives to help measure and rank barriers to investment in oil- and gas-producing regions. A total of 333 individuals completed the 2017 survey, providing sufficient data to evaluate 97 jurisdictions.