First Nations KXL deal would unlock wealth for indigenous groups in Canada

Frist Nations KXL investment

TC Energy’s $769 million sale of a stake of Keystone XL pipeline to a Canadian First Nations group called Natural Law Energy (NLE) would unlock wealth for such minority groups in Canada.

The deal, announced earlier this month, was a result of three years of pressure from the indigenous group, that demanded part of ownership instead of short-term payments for allowing the pipeline to cross their lands, Reuters reports.

Natural Law Energy’s investment is the biggest ever in an oil project; it’s a sharp contrast with other communities opposing midstream projects such as this. Which highlights how some communities are eager to participate in the sector, instead of rejecting it.

Such a deal would add pressure to Joe Biden’s administration as he has promised to reject the $8 billion worth project; if successful, it would mean a wealth trigger for minorities and would help them to afford collage education for their youth or pay for other investments, said Chief Alvin Francis, one of NLE majors, from the community of Nekaneet.

“It’s about making life better for all of our youth,” he said, and added. “If I could meet Joe Biden I’d say, ‘This a chance for you to change my First Nation’s view of the world.’”

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First Nations coalition attracts bank’s attention

According to Reuters, NLE is conformed by four tribes: Ermineskin, Akamihk, Louis Bull Tribe and Little Pine, to which Nekaneet is added. This First Nations coalition has already attracted banks attention to finance the TC’s deal, as much of its shipping capacity is already under contract.

Brian Mountain NLE director, declined to name the banks interested in their financing, but said to Reuters: “What we’re doing is creating intergenerational wealth.

Although the institutions interested in financing NLE remain anonymous, the financing will be completed by next year’s third quarter when Biden’s position over Keystone XL clarifies.

This fact is known, and it would ease the risk for the banks and for First Nations’ NLE, according to Ken Coates, professor at the University of Saskatchewan.

Alvin Francis remains optimistic about Biden’s position. While there’s a risk of him rejecting Keystone XL, his position on the subject may soften, he considers.

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