The fact that it has now come to this will only further demonstrate how difficult it is for private sector companies to succeed under current conditions.
The Trudeau government is nationalizing the Trans Mountain Pipeline.
Under a deal between the Trudeau government and Kinder Morgan, the government says pipeline construction will continue while the agreement is finalized, and that the federal government will take ownership of the pipeline by August.
The cost to Canadian taxpayers will be $4.5 Billion.
In a press conference, Bill Morneau said “We believe this is the best way to protect thousands of well-paying jobs and the safest and most effective way to get our resources to world markets. Make no mistake: this is an investment in Canada’s future.”
On Twitter, Justin Trudeau said “Today, we’ve taken action to create & protect jobs in Alberta and BC, and restart construction on the TMX pipeline expansion, a vital project in the national interest.”
Today, we’ve taken action to create & protect jobs in Alberta and BC, and restart construction on the TMX pipeline expansion, a vital project in the national interest. Watch Ministers @Bill_Morneau and @jimcarr_wpg: https://t.co/cgAn3lH8jq
— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) May 29, 2018
Andrew Scheer pushed back:
“Today Justin Trudeau admitted he has failed Canadian energy workers and investors. He is handing Canadians a $4.5 billion bill for this failure.”
Today Justin Trudeau admitted he has failed Canadian energy workers and investors. He is handing Canadians a $4.5 billion bill for this failure. I’ll have more to say at 11am ET when I respond to today’s Trans Mountain news.
— Andrew Scheer (@AndrewScheer) May 29, 2018
Scheer makes an important point: The government is not supposed to have to give private companies billions of taxpayers dollars to get projects going.
Notably, that $4.5 billion bill only covers the initial sale of the pipeline, not the ongoing construction costs – which will also be covered by the taxpayers of our country.
Making this such a crazy situation is the fact that the project was already approved. The government said they had the authority to ensure it was done. And Trudeau had promised that his carbon tax and environmental policies would create the ‘social licence’ necessary for the energy industry – in the private sector – to succeed.
Instead, we have now reached the absurd and disturbing situation in which massive amounts of public money are needed to get a project going – even after it was approved. That will send an incredibly destructive message to those considering investments in Canada.
And while the government says they will find a buyer to sell it to, there are no guarantees that this will work out well for Canadians financially.
The worst case scenario would have been the project ending entirely. But the government shouldn’t be spinning this as something they should get credit for. This is still a sad day for Canada, and it raises ominous prospects about the future of growth and investment in our nation.
Photo – Twitter