Regina Chamber of Commerce CEO John Hopkins says the loss of the Energy East pipeline project will hurt southern Saskatchewan.
In fact, Hopkins says the abrupt cancellation of the project hurts all Canadians.
“Devastating news,” Hopkins said. “This is devastating news for the country. This was a nation-building project really, in a lot of ways. It would have given us energy independence.”
Hopkins expressed frustration with the difficulty of getting nation-building projects, like Energy East, off the ground.
“It really speaks to the fact that it’s getting harder and harder to get nation-building projects like this one done in Canada,” Hopkins said. “It really begs the question, what are we going to about this as a country? Never mind as a province, or a city, but as a country. How do we get some of these projects that position us for the future done now?”
Both the federal finance and energy ministers are painting TransCanada’s decision to cancel the Energy East pipeline project as one motivated purely by business reasons.
But Deputy Conservative Leader Lisa Raitt says the decision is the result of what she calls the “disastrous” policies of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, blaming him for not being a champion of the Canadian energy sector.
And John Hopkins agrees. He says the decision to cap the project only hurts the interests of Saskatchewan and Alberta.
“This does nothing but ensure that we are going to continue to have lower prices for our oil and nothing is on the horizon that’s really going to change that for us,” Hopkins said. “Meanwhile, in the United States, they continue to build pipelines and continue to add to their infrastructure.”
Energy Minister Jim Carr says Canada is open for business and offers a stable and predictable investment climate, proximity to global markets and a skilled workforce.