On Oct. 17, 2013 in Toronto, the Macdonald-Laurier Institute brought together some of the leading experts in the natural resources field, government and academia for a high-level round table on issues surrounding fuel refining, titled "Is more refining at home the best way to get the most value out of Canada's oil?"

The discussion was moderated by MLI managing director Brian Lee Crowley, and featured presentations by Daniel Massey of Argus Media and MLI senior fellow Philip Cross. The project was sponsored by the Canadian Fuels Association.

The market for energy in North America is undergoing unprecedented changes. For crude oil, the rapid growth of supply from the oil sands and shale oil in North America has displaced large amounts of US imports from Latin America and Africa. However, the price Canada receives for its exports of bitumen from the oil sands has been discounted because it is landlocked in the central part of North America, a prisoner of the current limitations of pipeline transport.

Participants in the Toronto round table were asked to discuss whether more domestic refining is the best way to maximize the benefit of our oil resources for Canadians. And how do the economic fundamentals of refining (e.g. access to domestic and international markets, access to different sources of crude, supply and demand) play out in Central and Eastern Canada?

Click here for a summary of the discussion, the agenda and list of participants.