Chinese oilsands acquisition raises concerns

Publication Source: Island Tides
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Author: Staff

The proposed purchase of Calgary-based Nexen Inc, Canada’s 12th-largest energy company, by the China National Offshore Oil Company, CNOOCLtd., for $15.1- billion (US) should be setting off alarms bells, stated Green Party Leader Elizabeth May, Saanich-Gulf Islands MP.

‘This has been described as the largest takeover by a Chinese company in the world, so very serious questions must be raised about the wisdom of such an unprecedented move,’ May stated. ‘We simply cannot allow strategic energy resources to disappear from Canadian control at such a rate and level with no real oversight.’

State-owned CNOOC was the first Chinese company to make a major acquisition in the Canadian oil industry when it purchased a 17% interest in MEG Energy for $150 million in 2005. Then, in 2011, it expanded by acquiring OPTI Canada for $2.1 billion, giving it 35% of key assets like the Long Lake oil sands facility. Nexen controls and operates the remaining 65% of that site.

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