Best Spot for Oil, Gas Investment? Try Colorado

The state is better then even Malaysia or Romania in its business and regulatory environment for oil and gas production. It turns out there’s a reason that Colorado is such a hotbed of oil and gas activity: We’re begging for it. According to the Fraser Institute Global Petroleum Survey 2007, Colorado has the best composite business climate for oil and gas production investment in the entire world, right up there with Thailand, Qatar and Romania.

The Fraser Institute is a Canadian consulting firm. They surveyed the “upstream” petroleum industry – that is, exploration and production, not refining, marketing and so on – in spring 2007. The institute asked industry executives to rank global jurisdictions on several criteria regarding suitability for investment. About one-third of the survey respondents were CEOs of their companies. Most of the rest were upper management. The companies responding invested $85 billion in production and development in 2006, nearly a third of what was spent worldwide.

The survey asked 16 questions about barriers to investment, then compiled the answers into indexes on a few topics: commercial environment, regulatory climate, business environment, geopolitical risk, and an “all-inclusive composite index.”

Colorado scored brilliantly on all these indexes. The state has the best “commercial environment.” It is tied with five others – Thailand, Romania, Peru, Canada’s Northwest Territories and Qatar – as having the most inviting regulatory environment. Colorado has the best “business environment index.” It’s tied with several others for low “geopolitical risk.” And the state has the best “all-inclusive composite index” of the 54 jurisdictions asked about.

The report says:

“On the basis of the All-Inclusive Composite Index, a measure that is described in detail in this report and which takes into account responses to all 16 survey questions, the five jurisdictions with the greatest barriers to investment are Bolivia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Russia, and Iran. The same measure indicates that Malaysia, Romania, Qatar, Thailand, and Colorado are the most attractive locations for upstream petroleum investment. The next 5 best jurisdictions in which to invest because of low barriers are: Wyoming, the Norwegian North Sea, Australia, Trinidad & Tobago, and the United Kingdom.”

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