ConocoPhillips Canada is laying off 250 to 300 employees in Calgary starting this week, as part of a global staff cut of 1,000 employees, CBC News has confirmed.

"As announced back in July, the majority of reductions will be in our Calgary head office," spokesman Rob Evans wrote in an email on Sunday.

Employees were informed the cuts would take place around the third week of September, and now the company confirms the reductions will begin this week, Evans said.

"This is part of a ConocoPhillips global initiative to align our operational capacity to our planned activity over the next few years," he said.

The company says Canada is looking less attractive than some of its other operations, blaming low commodity prices and the inability to get product to new markets.

"Coupled with increased local cost pressures such as corporate taxes, regulatory compliance costs and property taxes, staying competitive in a global portfolio is a challenge for some parts of our Canadian business," Evans said in July.

Last September, ConocoPhillips Canada announced a 15 per cent reduction of its workforce — about 400 employees and 100 contractors.

In March 2015, the company announced it was cutting seven per cent of its Canadian staff — about 200 jobs.

The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers estimates at least 44,000 direct jobs have been lost in the oil and gas industry since the downturn started.

With files from Genevieve Normand