Education wise use of oil revenue

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Author: Northern Gateway
Dated: 13 March 2012

One thing is for sure: there is no lack of debate about what Canadians should be doing with our oil resources. Some suggest all of it should be kept for Canadians to use exclusively. Others suggest only refined products should be sold outside of Canada. Others say let the markets decide where and what should be sold outside of the country.

Whichever side of the debate you might find yourself, many Canadians will agree that the revenues we generate now should be used, at least in part, to prepare for the future.  

So how do we translate our strong natural resource economy into long term success? As Jeremy Torobin, a writer on the Globe and Mail’s Economy Lab blog, notes, we must create “an adaptable, highly educated and highly skilled work force that can adapt quickly to fill a variety of needs.”

Some business leaders have called for a renewed focus on technical trade skills training and professional services education. An emphasis on developing the skills necessary for innovation, and to take advantage of opportunities presented by emerging markets, should lead to economic stability as our economy changes over time.  

A new study by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), examined by Torobin on the Economy Lab blog, stands tall in its praise for Canadians’ ability to use our oil resource gains to educate ourselves for the future.

The study looked at the results from the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) and found that Canada, along with Australia and Norway, outperforms almost all of the other oil producing nations.

“Canada is among a select group of countries positioned to prosper even some time way down the road, when finite resources like oil start to become less important to the economy,” wrote Torobin.

It’s good that Canadians are focused on education for the future. As the study’s author originally noted: “Without sufficient investment in skills, people languish on the margins of society, technological progress does not translate into productivity growth, and countries can no longer compete in an increasingly knowledge-based global economy.”

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  • Student, Oct 02nd, 2012 (2 years ago)

    I also believe that we should keep the refinery here in Canada, is there any studies that has been done by the compagnie regarding the benefits of keeping the jobs here for canadians. I would like to have an aswer i would help me understand what the President and the CEO are thinking; is it only profits? are they thinking environmental ?

  • Amber Friesen, Jun 16th, 2012 (2 years ago)

    I don't understand - if we are wanting to keep profits and good paying jobs in Canada why aren't we doing the refining here? - As Canadians we have a HUGE amount of natural amazing wilderness - and therefor a responsibility to encourage and support the environment - Shipping our oil overseas seems irresponsible? Sure it's cheaper to refine overseas but that's because China has fewer environmental laws. Is it really in our best interest to ship the jobs overseas - ship such a potentially environmentally sensitive commodity to a place that will end up damaging their environment far more than we would be damaging ours? - Sorry but I just don't see how shipping our jobs and our environmental responsibilities overseas is good for us.

  • Connie, Jun 16th, 2012 (2 years ago)

    I say keep within Canada, once you let it go, it maybe drained and then Canada will have no profit gain. Give Canada a lead to stay on top and educate who will want to advance the increase of usage.

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