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Suncor partners with First Nations in pipeline acquisition

Suncor Energy

Suncor Energy, the integrated energy company, announced this week it partnered with eight indigenous communities in the regional municipality of Wood Buffalo in Northern Alberta, for the acquisition of a 15% stake interest in the Northern Courier Pipeline.

The partnership is considered historic, as it includes Suncor, three First Nations, and five Métis communities who will own a 15 percent stake in this pipeline asset with a value of approximately CAD$1.3 billion. The pipeline will provide long-term, stable revenues that will benefit the communities for decades to come.

In order to complete the acquisition, the company and the communities formed the Astisiy Limited Partnership. It includes Suncor, the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation, the Chipewyan Prairie First Nation, and the Fort McMurray #468 First Nation. It also involves the Métis communities Conklin local 193, Fort Chipewyan Métis Local #125, Fort McKay Métis Nation McMurray Métis, and Willow Lake Métis Nation.

Suncor integrated this whole collaboration platform in order to acquire the 15% stake interest in the pipeline back in 2019. It did so as part of Northern Courier Pipeline’s execution of long-term, non-recourse financing of CAD $1 billion. Moreover, TC Energy sold its remaining 85% interest to the Alberta Investment Management Corporation.

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Suncor and partners to generate over CAD$16 million annually in revenues

Moreover, the pipeline connects the Fort Hills asset to Suncor’s East Tank Farm asset. Once the purchase is completed, this segment of the pipeline will be operated by Suncor. According to the statement, the transaction will close by the fourth quarter of 2021.

On the other hand, the acquisition will benefit the Astisiy partners from competitive tolls from long-term transportation and terminalling services agreements supporting the pipeline. In fact, the partnership will generate revenues of approximately $16 million annually.

Mark Little, President, and Chief Executive Officer, Suncor Energy said about this matter. “We’re excited to have eight new business partners in the RMWB and continue on our Journey of Reconciliation with yet another opportunity for increased participation by Indigenous communities in our business.”

Finally, Allan Adam, Chief, Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation, commented. “The Northern Courier Pipeline opportunity demonstrates progressive relationship building and economic reconciliation between industry and Indigenous Communities. ACFN is committed to delivering long-term value to membership, and this is yet another example of this framework.”

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