VICTORIA (NEWS 1130) – Finance Minister Mike de Jong says the stakes are huge but the payoff could be bigger from a proposed $36 billion liquefied natural gas deal backed by Malaysian energy giant Petronas.
BC’s politicians are returning to the legislature this week to debate the details of an agreement that de Jong says could pave the way for the largest private investment in the province’s history.
The Pacific NorthWest LNG project planned for Lelu Island near Prince Rupert still requires federal environmental approval and final company consent.
But de Jong says ratifying the project development agreement in the legislature provides investor certainty. He says the potential economic returns from BC’s first LNG deal will outweigh targeted-tax tradeoffs that will come with the 25-year deal he will table in the legislature this week.
Opposition New Democrat Leader John Horgan says what he’s seen of the agreement looks more like a sellout than a payoff for the province and that Petronas could benefit while BC may not.