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Chamber supports Gateway

The Kelowna Chamber of Commerce is firmly standing behind the Northern Gateway pipeline.

The chamber announced Tuesday afternoon it supports the BC Chamber of Commerce and applauds the federal government’s approval of the Northern Gateway project.

“Kelowna stands to gain economically from the development of pipelines in Western Canada. Our suppliers, professional services, airport and construction companies will see direct growth due to this decision,” stated Curtis Darmohray, President of the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce.

Darmohray says the decision sends a positive message to potential B.C. investors.

“Congratulations to both Enbridge and the federal government for their efforts to meet BC's five conditions for pipelines."

He urged the province to lose no time in clarifying its five conditions and the path that would get projects such as Northern Gateway to ‘yes’.

“We appreciate the significant efforts that Enbridge has made towards meeting the first condition of a successful environmental review process, as well as the federal government’s efforts to work with industry to meet the conditions around world-class marine and land spill response,” he said.

John Winter, CEO of the BC Chamber of Commerce urged continued momentum on the remaining conditions.

"We call on the province to provide further clarity as to what success of the five conditions looks like, as we work collectively towards making this project a reality. The Northern Gateway project is a major economic win for B.C. and for Canada,” said Winter.

“We applaud the federal government for making the right decision for our province and our country today.”

According to the chamber, the project will create jobs, boost GDP and generate tax revenue for BC, while enabling Canadian oil producers critical access to Asian markets.

“Oil is a major source of Canada’s resource wealth, but with virtually no pipeline capacity to the West Coast, Canada’s producers are stuck selling oil at depressed prices to the U.S. – sometimes $30 a barrel below world prices,” Winter said.

“And that’s not just an Albertan problem – it’s a BC problem. As the federal government loses billions of dollars in lost taxes, we’re forfeiting BC's share of that wealth through reduced federal funding programs.”

Winter added BC's future growth will depend heavily on private-sector investment.

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