China, which has surpassed Japan as the world’s second-largest economy, signaled its intent to invest in North America as Calgary-based natural-gas producer Encana Corp. on Feb. 13 announced the largest Chinese investment in Canada to date. Under terms of a $5.4-billion cooperation agreement, PetroChina, an arm of China’s state-owned National Petroleum Co., will acquire a 50% share in Encana’s Cutbank Ridge gas production facilities, representing 255 million cubic feet per day of proved reserves of approximately one trillion cu ft on 250,000 hectares straddling the Alberta-British Columbia border. Photo: Courtesy Encana Infusion of Chinese capital aimed at priming Cutbank Ridge-area
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.