One united Indigenous pipeline ownership would be ‘game changer’: Jason Kenney – by James Keller (Globe and Mail – June 11, 2019)

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney says he hopes the growing number of First Nations-led proposals to buy the Trans Mountain pipeline come together under one banner, which he says would be a “game changer” for obstacles facing the expansion project.

Mr. Kenney met with First Nations leaders Monday to pitch his government’s proposal for a Crown corporation to facilitate Indigenous ownership of pipelines and other major energy projects, ahead of a coming deadline for the federal government to approve the Trans Mountain project.

The United Conservative government plans to set up the Indigenous Opportunities Corp. this fall with $1-billion in loan guarantees and other financing, as part of a plan to elevate the voices of First Nations communities that support the stalled Trans Mountain expansion.

Several Indigenous organizations, including Project Reconciliation and Iron Coalition, have been putting together proposals and seeking funding to make offers to buy part of the pipeline.

“Whether it’s the Iron Coalition or Project Reconciliation, or the other projects, we encourage them in their efforts, but hopefully they can come to some sort of consortium so we’re not having to pick winners or losers,” Mr. Kenney said after a meeting with several Alberta First Nations leaders in Edmonton.

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