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    Supporters of fossil fuel infrastructure projects position themselves as friends of working people, framing climate action as antithetical to the more immediately pressing need to protect oil and gas workers’ livelihoods. And as the latest report from the CCPA-BC and Corporate Mapping Project confirms, this framing has become dominant across the media landscape. Focusing on pipeline […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
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    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
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    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • 2018 State of the Inner City Report: Green Light Go...Improving Transportation Equity December 7, 2018
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    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
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    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
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1% Potash Royalties: Typo or Foreshadowing?

Saskatchewan’s Ministry of Energy and Resources has released its 2011-12 Annual Report. The potash table (page 36) incredibly shows “Royalty/Tax” revenue of only $62.5 million in 2010-11 and $38.4 million in 2011-12.

These figures amount to just 1.2% and 0.6% respectively of the value of potash sales. I have long argued that Saskatchewan’s potash royalties are too low, but they are not that low!

It seems that the first digit is missing from both numbers. The revenue table (page 31) shows 2011-12 potash revenues of $438.4 million. And the 2010-11 figure was $262.5 million.

The omission of $400 million and $200 million of annual potash revenue is ironic in a report that emphasizes undercutting other jurisdictions rather than collecting the best possible return for the people of Saskatchewan. The word “competitiveness” appears eight times in the report.

I guess this typo makes our province’s potash royalties and taxes look ultra-competitive. We can only hope that it’s just a typo and not a subliminal message from Minister Bill Boyd about future resource policy!

UPDATE (August 18): From today’s Saskatoon StarPhoenix (page A8):

Regina economist Erin Weir, expected to run for the leadership of the Sask. NDP, found a typo this week in the Energy and Resources Ministry annual report.

In a message to media, he noted a table showed potash revenue of $62.5 million in 2010-11 and $38.4 million in 2011-12.

“I have long argued that Saskatchewan’s potash royalties are too low, but they are not that low!” Weir wrote.

“It seems that the first digit is missing from both numbers.”

The correct numbers, which were approved by government staff, are $262.5 million in 2010-11 and $438.4 million in 2011-12, but the first digits were dropped by the publisher or designer, said a spokesperson, noting the online version has been fixed.

Weir noted the word “competitiveness” appears eight times in the report.

“I guess this typo makes our province’s potash royalties and taxes look ultracompetitive,” he continued.

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