Canadian pipeline giant Enbridge has agreed to offload one of its key networks, in Saskatchewan, for US$1.08 billion. The buyer is Tundra Energy, a private energy infrastructure company. The proceeds of the deal will go towards funding Enbridge’s takeover of U.S. Spectra Energy, worth US$28 billion.
The South East Saskatchewan pipeline system includes some 1,600 km of pipelines gathering crude oil and other liquid hydrocarbons, one trunk line, and four truck terminals, spanning Saskatchewan and part of Manitoba. According to the buyer of the system, its average daily throughput to Enbridge’s mainline in Manitoba is about 175,000 barrels of crude. The system also includes an extension to the Bakken shale in the U.S., but this extension is not included in the acquisition.
For Enbridge, the deal represents part of a divestment plan envisaging the sale of assets worth US$2 billion, with all the proceeds going towards the funding of the Spectra Energy deal – a merger that will create the largest energy infrastructure company in North America, according to the Globe and Mail. When the deal is closed, Enbridge shareholders will own 57 percent of the company, while Spectra holders will have the remaining 43 percent.
The company will have assets in crude oil, liquids and natural gas pipelines, terminal and midstream operations. The company will also have a regulated utility portfolio and renewable energy operations.
Meanwhile, Enbridge is awaiting the decision of the Canadian federal government on its proposed Northern Gateway pipeline, which was suspended by a court earlier this year. The court’s ruling was that the previous Canadian government, which had given the go-ahead to Northern Gateway, did not consult First Nations fully.
Northern Gateway, worth about US$6 billion, is one of several pipelines that Trudeau’s government will have to consider in the face of widespread public opposition to any kind of oil infrastructure projects, finding a balance between the economic benefits of these projects and the opposition.