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CALGARY—The oil sands support more than 400,000 jobs in Canada and
1.5 percent of the country’s economy, but the sector is still falling short for
domestic manufacturers, according to a report by the Conference Board of
Every year, about $5 billion worth of goods come into the oil sands from
overseas, and that number will burgeon to $140 billion over the next 20
years, said Michael Burt, director of industrial trends with the Conference
Board, who presented the report at the National Supply Chain Forum in
Calgary earlier this week.
“It’s primarily manufactured goods that we’re importing. Things like heating
and ventilation equipment that’s produced locally and could be sourced from
companies here in Canada,” Burt said.
Steel products are coming in from offshore, along with transportation
equipment, electronics and other field components.
“It’s true that the vehicles used in the oil sands are sometimes site specific
or product specific and we may not make the parts right now in Ontario to
supply those vehicles, but how easy would it be to retool to adapt our