Shareholders of Petro-Canada and Suncor Energy Inc. voted in favour of the planned merger on June 4, 2009. Suncor executives reported the merger was approved by 96% of Petro-Canada shareholders and 98% of Suncor shareholders. Review of the merger by the Canadian Competition Bureau is still ongoing, however, meaning the companies cannot estimate when the deal will close. Suncor also indicated that a decision on the future of Petro-Canada’s Fort Hills oil sands project, and other oil sands projects put on hold by the merger, would be decided within the first three months of the deal closing.
The U.S.-based Council on Foreign Relations reported that expansion of Canadian oil sands will aid United States energy security and does not need to come at the expense of climate change. The authors of the report note that currently "the economic and security value of oil sands expansion" outweighs climate change concerns. This coincides with statements from U.S. Energy Secretary, Steven Chu, that he believes technology can work to solve environmental problems associated with the oil sands.
Preliminary figures from the Canadian Energy Research Institute expect the oil sands to contribute just over $1.4 trillion to the Canadian economy over the next 25 years. Additionally, emerging shale gas production in the Horn River Basin and Montney formations in British Columbia may contribute roughly $279 billion to the economy during that same time period. The study was conducted with a view toward showing how investments in new developments and expenditures in ongoing operations can generate jobs and economic spinoffs benefitting the economy, generally.