Malaysian energy company Petronas said it started work on a project that would facilitate liquefied natural gas exports from Canada\'s west coast. Technip announced it was awarded an engineering contract by Pacific NorthWest LNG Ltd. for a liquefied natural gas project slated for development on Lelu Island, British Columbia. The facility will have the capacity to process 6 million tons of LNG per year. Technip said its engineering work would be finished by the middle of next year. British Columbia Premier Christy Clark said the contract is a step needed to facilitate economic ties overseas. \"LNG development is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to gain a foothold in a global industry, create well-paying jobs for British Columbians today, and keep us on the path to a debt-free British Columbia,\" she said in a statement. Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper has tried to woo Asian markets to his country\'s energy sector. The Canadian energy sector relies heavily on the United States.