Ottawa dangles taxpayer funds to get Trans Mountain Expansion completed

Ottawa dangles taxpayer funds to get Trans Mountain Expansion completed

Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau says his government is ready to backstop the Trans Mountain Expansion Project, offering to indemnify Kinder Morgan Canada (KML) or any other company willing to takeover the project. The government stopped short of specifying what amount of taxpayers funds would be on the table, if there were any limits or any conditions associated with the payout.

MAP COURTESY KINDER MORGAN

Morneau blamed the problem squarely on BC Premier John Horgan, calling the delays "politically motivated" and "unnecessary." The finance minister called the premier's attempts to block construction at any cost "unconstitutional," noting the expansion was approved by both Ottawa and the BC government, under the former BC Liberals.

Kinder Morgan Canada says it "appreciates" the gesture but won't negotiate in public. KML CEO Steven Kean insists construction will not be restarted until the company receives clarity on path forward. Talks will continue ahead of KML's May 31st deadline.

Premier Horgan insists he has the right to defend his province against the risks of exporting Alberta's heavy crude.

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