Kenney announces inquiry into foreign funding of anti-energy campaigns

Jul 9 2019, 8:29 pm

The Government of Alberta will be launching a public inquiry into the alleged foreign funding working against the province’s energy industry.

Premier Jason Kenney made the announcement on July 4, stating that his government believes foreign-funded campaigns have been spending millions of dollars to spread misinformation and stop Alberta’s oil from reaching tidewater.

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“As promised, our government is standing up for Alberta’s interests by fighting the well-funded foreign campaign targeting our energy industry,” Kenney said in a release.

“This misinformation has been allowed to defame Alberta for far too long. It has seen foreign special interests secretively spending tens of millions of dollars to thwart Alberta’s economic development by landlocking our energy – but it stops now.”

The inquiry will be carried out in two phases, according to the release, with a final report being submitted by forensic and restructuring accountant Steve Allan by July 2, 2020.

As commissioner, Allan will spend the next year interviewing witnesses, reviewing information, and conducting research into the possibility of foreign funding being put towards landlocking Alberta’s oil industry.

“We’ve known about a deliberate and targeted attempt that has sought to landlock Alberta oil for several years,” said Sonya Savage, Minister of Energy, in the release.

“We are launching this public inquiry to expose the foreign interests behind the anti-Alberta energy campaign. Steve Allan has more than 40 years’ of experience and is highly qualified for this important work. I look forward to the results of his inquiry.”

If necessary, Allan will hold a public hearing after gathering information in phase one.

The publicly-funded inquiry has a total expected budget of $2.5 million.

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