Brookfield a potential buyer of Trans Mountain?
February 11, 2020
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Brookfield Infrastructure Partners LP could be a potential buyer of the Canadian government-owned Trans Mountain oil pipeline, a Stifel FirstEnergy analyst told Reuters, as the project expansion struggles with increasing costs arising from regulatory delays.
In 2018, Ottawa bought the 67-year-old pipeline for $4.5 billion to ensure expansion proceeded, but has faced opposition by environmental and some indigenous groups.
Brookfield could be a potential “dark horse”, as it recently completed a $20 billion capital raise, and continues to have excellent access to capital markets, analyst Ian Gillies said in a recent research note.
“We would also expect various indigenous groups to pursue acquiring the pipeline”, Gillies wrote, adding that any further cost overruns would make Trans Mountain an unattractive M&A candidate for existing Canadian infrastructure companies.
Trans Mountain and Brookfield were not immediately available for comment.
The expansion of the Trans Mountain oil pipeline is expected to cost $12.6 billion, a sharp increase from a previous estimate, due to court and regulatory delays, rising costs of land, labor and accommodations for indigenous groups who had raised concerns.
Toronto-Canada based Brookfield Infrastructure Partners, which engages in the acquisition and management of infrastructure assets, last year bought a number of federally-regulated natural gas gathering and processing assets from pipeline operator Enbridge.