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Pembina Pipeline posts $1.2 billion loss on petrochemical, LNG project impairments

Pembina Pipeline posts $1.2 billion loss on petrochemical, LNG project impairments
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CALGARY - Pembina Pipeline Corp. is reporting a $1.2 billion net fourth-quarter loss thanks mainly to $1.6 billion in non-cash after-tax impairment charges on its proposals to build an Alberta petrochemical plant and Oregon LNG export facility.

The Calgary-based company said in December it and joint venture partner Petrochemical Industries Co. of Kuwait had decided to halt work on an integrated propane dehydration plant and polypropylene upgrading facility near Edmonton.

Pembina has a 50 per cent interest in the project designed to turn propane into plastic pellets, similar to the nearby $4 billion Heartland Petrochemical Complex under construction by rival Inter Pipeline Ltd.

The project received tentative Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approval last year but hasn’t been able to secure a required clean water permit from the state.

Pembina says it thinks both projects are sound but it is taking the impairment charges because it can’t reasonably forecast when they will be built.

“We believe the time for these projects may come; however, we can sadly no longer predict with certainty when that time will be and hence were compelled to reflect their impairments in our 2020 financial statements through a non-cash charge,” it said in a news release.

It says its fourth-quarter earnings would have been $338 million excluding the impairments and the associated deferred tax recovery.
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