Alberta Budget: Bitumen, Oil, Natgas Royalties To Remain Steady

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The Alberta government’s royalties from bitumen, crude oil and natural gas by-products are expected to remain fairly steady over the next three fiscal years.

Bitumen royalties are estimated at $12.5 billion in 2024-25, a $1.8-billion decrease from the $14.4 billion forecast for 2023-24, driven by the lower WTI price.

A narrower light-heavy differential will support a slight increase in royalties over the two subsequent years to about $12.9 billion in 2026-27.


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Conventional oil royalties are estimated at $2.8 billion in 2024-25, a decrease of $400 million from 2023-24. They continue on a slightly downward trend for the remainder of the forecast period, as prices moderate, and oil royalties are projected at roughly $2.7 billion in 2026-27.

Natural gas

Natural gas and by-product royalties are estimated at $1.5 billion in 2024-25, $200 million higher than 2023-24, and a significant $2.3-billion year-over-year drop from 2022-23. This follows a decrease in the Alberta Reference Price (ARP) for natural gas from $4.60/GJ to $2.20/GJ.

Royalties are expected to increase moderately over the forecast period, reaching $1.8 billion in 2026-27 when the ARP approaches around $3.80/GJ as the supply-demand balances improve.

The outlook for natural gas and by-products has improved, with increasing demand from oilsands projects and power generation, said the government.

“Steady production growth in Alberta is forecast,” noted budget documents.

Crown sales

Bonuses and sales of Crown land leases are projected to reach $321 million 2024-25, marking a decline of $114 million compared to 2023-24. This drop is attributed to lower commodity prices, resulting in reduced prices per hectare and fewer hectares sold.


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