Min­is­ter con­firms Hebron dis­pute un­re­solved

The Southern Gazette - - NEWS - BY AH­S­LEY FITZ­PATRICK TC ME­DIA

Pro­vin­cial Nat­u­ral Re­sources Min­is­ter Jerome Kennedy has in­di­cated ne­go­ti­a­tions aimed at re­solv­ing a dis­pute over how much of the Hebron off­shore oil plat­form will be built in New­found­land and Labrador are con­tin­u­ing.

The pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment is de­mand­ing the plat­form’s der­rick equip­ment mod­ule can be built in the prov­ince, while Hebron project lead­ers with ExxonMo­bil have said it would re­sult in un­due project de­lays and fi­nan­cial im­pli­ca­tions for all par­ties.

Mr. Kennedy told re­porters Thurs­day both sides are still at the ta­ble – for now.

“I can say that the me­di­a­tion process is on­go­ing. That’s the best way I can de­scribe it.”

Asked a fol­low-up ques­tion on the state of the ne­go­ti­a­tions, he of­fered a less-thanop­ti­mistic out­look on the talks.

“We will end up in ar­bi­tra­tion.”

The pro­vin­cial min­is­ter spoke with re­porters at the House of Assem­bly Thurs­day and in­tended only to speak on the sub­ject of a let­ter to the ed­i­tor in that day’s Tele­gram, in which for­mer premier Roger Grimes wrote on re­la­tions be­tween the Gov­ern­ments of New­found­land and Labrador and Quebec, in the con­text of the Lower Churchill de­vel­op­ment.

Mean­while, prepa­ra­tion work for Hebron con­struc­tion con­tin­ues at Nal­cor En­ergy’s Bull Arm Fab­ri­ca­tion Site.

As The Tele­gram re­ported Aug. 11, Malthus Canada Ltd. has been awarded a con­tract to build a worker camp at site, with 400 beds to be ready by the end of the year.

First oil from Hebron is expected by mid-2017.

St. John’s Tele­gram

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