The U.S., Canada, and Energy: He Who Hesitates...

Erika Johnsen
Posted: Jan 16, 2012 9:46 AM

...loses business opportunities to China. With all of the Obama administration's dithering on the up-in-air pipeline projects, it's no wonder Canada's PM Stephen Harper is planning another visit to China to discuss the possibility of selling some of Canada's massive supplies of natural resources to China's energy-ravenous, growing economy. While the Canadians would much rather work with us, and it's possible that PM Harper is hoping to spur the U.S. into some kind of action by meeting with the Chinese, they can sit on so much black gold for only so long. It's just business:

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Stephen Harper is heading to China next month for his second official visit, as his government looks to boost bilateral trade and ship more energy products to the Asian powerhouse.

Business leaders and political observers say the China trip is important for future trade deals, demonstrates a warming in Sino-Canadian relations and could allow Harper to meet with the new, incoming Chinese leadership.

Harper announced Wednesday in Ottawa, after meeting with Chinese Ambassador Zhang Junsai, that he has accepted an invitation to visit the country in the second week of February. ...

China is Canada's second-largest trading partner, behind only the United States, and a key customer for Canadian natural resources and agricultural products. ...

The Harper government is looking to increase petroleum exports to China, but those hopes are very much pinned on the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline project currently under review by the National Energy Board.