Since Atlantic Canadian offshore oil and gas production became a reality in the 1990s, criticism of the royalty regimes and associated agreements has been a regular occurrence in both the media and the respective provincial legislatures. As a result, the public is subject to considerable uncertainty and anxiety about whether returns from resource exploitation are fair. AIMS second paper in its Oil & Gas Series entitled “Atlantic Petroleum Royalties: Raw Deal or Fair Deal?” is the first independent investigation to determine if the criticisms and anxiety are justified. The author, noted oil and gas expert Dr. G. Campbell Watkins, concludes that, although there is room for improvement, the regimes in fact stand up to close examination: they do provide a fair return to the provinces and citizens while not, in themselves, discouraging further development of the industry.

Read the full paper.