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LNG forecasts accurate?

Premier Christy Clark is projecting British Columbia will rival energy giant Alberta in terms of "contribution to Canada" once the province starts exporting liquefied natural gas to Asia.

Clark was preaching the gospel of natural gas exports Monday in Ottawa with a large delegation that included about two dozen energy industry business people and three First Nations leaders.

"We have a chance in British Columbia to do as much or more for the country as Alberta has done," Clark said of her province's energy export potential.

"We should all be very proud of what Alberta's contributed to Canada. We have our chance in BC now to make a similar sized contribution to Confederation, and we want to do it."

However, no final investment deals have been signed and Clark could not predict whether any will be completed this year.

The latest BC budget didn't project revenues from liquefied natural gas for the next three years.

Greg Rickford, the federal natural resources minister, told the House of Commons the Conservative government approved four long-term LNG export licences for British Columbia last week.

"The growing demand for natural gas makes Asia an ideal place for diversifying our energy markets," Rickford told the House as Clark watched from the visitor's gallery.

"Estimates suggest that the natural gas sector could create 54,000 jobs per year between 2012 and 2035 in British Columbia."

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