Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Proposed Global Grain Terminal purchase, which includes the Prince Rupert Grain facility under review by Federal Government

Prince Rupert Grain is one of six Canadian terminals that would be part
of a proposed sale to an American agriculture giant if a proposes sale
of Viterra is allowed to move forward

A proposed 8 billion dollar purchase by the US based organization Bunge, of the global agricultural giant Viterra, which among its assets operates Prince Rupert Grain, is catching the eye of the Federal Government.

With the government setting in motion a review of the purchase plans to ensure that the Canadian global shipping industry for agriculture products remains competitive.

Viterra which is a global agricultural conglomerate with head offices in Rotterdam, Netherlands markets product in over 70 markets with their partners. 

The company  has a Canadian office located in Regina, Saskatchewan  

Viterra operates six port facilities in Canada, which include Prince Rupert Grain one of the dominant industrial footprints on the local waterfront.

The potential purchaser, Bunge has head offices in St. Louis Missouri.

The plans of the two Global organizations to combine operations were first outlined in a joint statement in June of this year.

The merger of Bunge and Viterra will create an innovative global agribusiness company well positioned to meet the demands of increasingly complex markets and better serve farmers and end-customers. With an enhanced global network, the combined company’s increased diversification across geographies, seasonal cycles and crops will increase optionality in managing risk and increase resiliency. Together, the highly complementary organizations will benefit from more diversified capabilities, greater operational flexibility across oilseed and grain supply chains and processing, greater resources and combined employee talent to innovate and deliver for customers in every environment, creating value for all stakeholders. -- From the June 13th announcement of the purchase plans

And while that financial shift may be creating value for stakeholders, the Federal Government is looking to explore whether it will provide any benefit to Canadians or the Canadian economy.

Yesterday, the Federal Transport Minister Pablo Rodriguez outlined the steps that the Federal government has in mind towards its review of the proposed merger.

“Given this transaction is of significant national interest in Canada’s transportation sector and the broader supply chain, it will be reviewed under the mergers and acquisitions provisions of the Canada Transportation Act. Goods must continue to move smoothly, and our supply chain must continue to grow stronger. 

This is why the Government will launch a public interest assessment that will include consultations with Canada’s ports and marine industry, stakeholders, other government departments, other orders of government, and Canadians."

Transport Canada will now have 250 days or until June 2nd 2024 to complete the public interest assessment. 

The full Federal statement can be reviewed here.

The Transport Canada review will be the second Canadian initiative to explore thistle, earlier this summer the Competition Bureau announced it would be conducting its own review.

Prince Rupert Grain and its rail link to the prairies is a vial part of the National shipping infrastructure, the conduit for much of Western Canada's agricultural products to global markets 

In the latest report from the Prince Rupert Port Authority, as of August of this year, Prince Rupert Grain was delivering strong results, with over 2 million tonnes shipped through the facility up significantly from one year ago.

The most recent data from the PRPA on Grain shipments through
the Prince Rupert Grain Terminal

Some of our past notes on Prince Rupert Grain can be reviewed through our archive page, other items of note related to Port terminals can be found here.

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