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12TuesdayJuly12014ByMEAGANWOHLBERGTheterritorialgovernmentishopingtosendastrongsignaltoindustrythattheBeaufortDeltaisopenforbusinesswiththeopeningofitsnewoilandgashead-quartersinInuvik.TheofceofthenewPe-troleumResourcesDivisionofIndustryTourismandIn-vestmentITIhelditsgrandopeninglastweekduringIn-uviksPetroleumShowwithPremierBobMcLeodtheretotouttheimportanceofde-velopingNorthernresources.Thenewnine-personbu-reauwillberesponsibleforreviewingallonshoreoilandgasapplicationsintheNWTanditsnoaccidentthatwillbeoccurringinInuvikratherthanYellowknifeaccord-ingtoITIMinisterDavidRamsay.ItsabigsignaltotheregionthatthegovernmentfullysupportswhatsgoingonthereandthefutureofresourcedevelopmentintheBeaufortDeltaRamsaytoldTheJournallastweek.ItsaboldstatementforagovernmentIthinktoputaheadquartersfunctioninInuvik.Apartfromposition-ingitselfnearsomeoftheterritoryslargestonshoreandoffshoreoilandgaseldsincludingtheCanolshaleplaytothesouthbasinganofceinInuvikalsothrowssupporttothelong-awaitedMackenzieGasProjectRam-saysaid.Weknowthethreean-choreldsfortheMacken-zieGasProjectarelocatedintheBeaufortDelta.OurgovernmenthasntgivenuphopethattheMackenzieGasProjectwillseethelightofdayatsomepointintimesoitsimportantthatthatofceistherehesaid.WhiletheheadquarterswillbelocatedinInuvikRamsaysaidthegovern-menthascommittedtomaintainingtheMacken-zieValleyPipelineOfficeinHayRiverwhichwillhaveanintakerolewhenitcomestoreceivingap-plications.SomeseniorstafferswillalsoremaininYellowknife.OpentooffshoreWhiletheNWTgovern-menthasnoregulatoryau-thorityforoffshorepetro-leumrightnowRamsaysaidpostingitspetroleumdivisionintheBeaufortre-gionleavesitpoisedforwhentheNWTtakesoversomeofthosepowersfromthefed-eralgovernment.Wedonthaveregula-toryresponsibilityfortheoffshorealthoughfromaneconomicstandpointwereobviouslyverymuchinter-estedinwhatshappeningintheoffshoreandtheopportu-nitiesthereforthecommuni-tiesintheBeaufortDeltaRamsaysaid.TheNationalEnergyBoardrecentlyissuedasetoflingrequirementsforoffshoredrillinginCanadasNorthernwatersandhasnotreceivedanyapplicationstodrillasofyetthoughRam-sayexpectsinterestedpar-tieswillcomeforwardintheshortterm.Theresoiltheretobecertaintherestremendousamountsofoilandgas.ItcouldrivaltheGulfofMex-icointermsofstraight-upresourcepotentialhesaid.Itisreallyafutureoppor-tunityforusandsomethingwecantlosesightof.Wehavetocontinuetodothegroundworktoseeactivityreturntothatregionofourterritory.MeetingswithOttawatodiscussthetransferofoffshoreresponsibilityareplannedforAugust.NWToilandgasheadquartersopensinInuvikIndustryOilGasPhotoAlasdairVeitchTheGNWThopesthenewoilandgasheadquartersinInuvikwillpromoteresourcedevelopmentintheBeaufortDeltaincludingoffshorepetroleumopportunities.