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Canada Raises Reserve Reporting Standards

Canadian investors can expect to see more details on oil and natural gas reserves reporting in annual reports starting this spring because Canadian securities commissions have adopted uniform, updated reporting standards for public companies.

The Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) developed the proposal for the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA). CSA is an umbrella organization representing 13 provincial and territorial securities commissions.

Public oil and gas companies whose stock is traded on exchanges in Canada must hire independent reserves evaluators or auditors to report on their oil and gas reserves and related future net revenue estimates.

A summary of that report along with other information about reserves is to be filed publicly every year. Stephen Murison, ASC vice-chairman, helped draft the proposals that led to the new regulations, effective Sept. 30, 2003.

The first reports to be filed under the new regulations will begin appearing in March and April, Murison said. The filing is due at the same time as the companies' audited annual financial statements.

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