The Fraser Institute

The Fraser Institute

December 01, 2015 05:30 ET

The Fraser Institute: Texas Top Region in the World for Oil and Gas Investment; Alabama and Oklahoma Also Rank High

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwired - Dec. 1, 2015) - Texas remains the most attractive jurisdiction for oil and gas investment in the world, according to an annual global survey of petroleum sector executives, released today by the Fraser Institute, an independent, non-partisan, Canadian public policy think tank.

The 2015 Global Petroleum Survey rates 126 jurisdictions around the world based on their barriers to investment (ie: high taxes, costly regulatory obligations and uncertainty over environmental regulations) and on the volume of oil and gas reserves.

Of the 14 jurisdictions with large petroleum reserves, Texas tops the list followed by United Arab Emirates, Alberta, Qatar and Kuwait.

"Texas remains a beacon of stability in the oil and gas sector with its wealth of proven reserves and clear and consistent regulatory environment," said Kenneth Green, Fraser Institute senior director, Natural Resource Studies and director of the Global Petroleum Survey.

The survey also features an alternate ranking format, which ignores proven oil and gas reserves and focuses solely on survey responses about the extent to which government policies can deter oil and gas investment.

In this format, seven out of the top 10 jurisdictions are in the United States. The Netherlands ranks number one, followed by Alabama, Oklahoma, Texas, Mississippi, Kansas, Arkansas, Saskatchewan, North Dakota and Manitoba.

"The fact that the United States remains attractive for oil and gas investment is a testament to the individual states enacting coherent environmental protections while maintaining fair tax regimes and regulatory processes," Green said.

One state that consistently fairs poorly in this survey is California - in 2015 the Golden State ranked 94th overall.

"While there are potential oil and gas reserves in the State of California, petroleum industry executives identify regulations, taxation and NIMBY'ism as reasons for not investing in upstream projects," Green said.

"It's unfortunate, because this type of investment could help fuel job growth and create prosperity for a Californian economy that badly needs it."

In terms of regions, Canada finishes second to the United States followed by Australia and Europe.

Meanwhile, countries in Latin America and the Middle East continue to linger at the bottom of the survey.

"While countries like Mexico and Brazil have shown some improvement in this year's rankings, unstable and uncompetitive policies continue to deter oil and gas investment across much of the world," said Taylor Jackson, Fraser Institute policy analyst and survey co-author.

The Global Petroleum Survey is administered each year to petroleum industry executives to help measure and rank the barriers to investment of oil- and gas-producing regions. A total of 439 individuals completed the survey questionnaire this year, providing sufficient data to evaluate 126 jurisdictions.

Follow the Fraser Institute on Twitter / Become a fan on Facebook

The Fraser Institute is an independent Canadian public policy research and educational organization with offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal and ties to a global network of think-tanks in 87 countries. Its mission is to improve the quality of life for Canadians, their families and future generations by studying, measuring and broadly communicating the effects of government policies, entrepreneurship and choice on their well-being. To protect the Institute's independence, it does not accept grants from governments or contracts for research. Visit

Contact Information

  • Media Contact: Dr. Kenneth P. Green
    Senior Director, Natural Resource Studies, Fraser Institute
    For interviews with Dr. Green, please contact:
    Aanand Radia, Media Relations Specialist, Fraser Institute
    (416) 363-6575 Ext. 238