Mississippi is ranked as the top place in the world for oil and gas investment, according to the opinions of international petroleum executives and managers in the Fraser Institutes Global Petroleum Survey 2011. Mississippi, which was ranked sixth out of 133 jurisdictions in 2010, vaulted into the top spot this year. Along with Mississippi, US states dominated the top 10 (Table 1), with Ohio finishing second overall, followed by Kansas (third), Oklahoma (fourth), Texas (fifth), West Virginia (sixth), Alabama (eighth) and North Dakota (10th).
NetherlandsNorth Sea and Hungary (ranked seventh and ninth, respectively) are the only jurisdictions outside North America to crack the top 10. The province of Saskatchewan is the highest-ranked Canadian jurisdiction, finishing 11th overall.
The survey also shows the US offshore/Gulf of Mexico experiencing one of the largest drops in the rankings, plummeting to 60th place overall after finishing 11th in the 2010 survey, which was conducted before the Deepwater Horizon oil leak.
Several other US jurisdictions also earned poor scores for environmental regulations and associated uncertainties. US Pacific/offshore was ranked 101st overall, the worst among the 23 US jurisdictions included in this years survey, after finishing 103rd last year. California was the lowest-ranked state, dropping to 91st from 87th in 2010.
Survey respondents pointed to Californias complex environmental restrictions, and lengthy wait times to attain drilling approvals, as highly unattractive, Mr. Angevine said.
Alaska, which respondents ranked as the second-least attractive state this year, plummeted to 83rd overall from 68th in 2010. Survey respondents remain critical of Alaskas fiscal regime, environmental regulations and land claims issues.
Globally, the top 10 most attractive jurisdictions in this years survey are: Mississippi, Ohio, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, West Virginia, Netherlands-North Sea, Alabama, Hungary and North Dakota.
The least attractive jurisdictions (Table 2) are: Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Democratic Republic of CongoKinshasa, Iraq, Libya and Russia. All but three of these countries (Uzbekistan, the Democratic Republic of the CongoKinshasa and Libya) were also among the group of 10 least desirable jurisdictions for investment in the 2010 survey. The three countries displaced from this group were Ukraine, Nigeria and Turkmenistan, each of which achieved somewhat better results this year than in 2010. HP