November 4, 2010
Canada to BHP: "Thanks, but no thanks for now."
Last week the Premier of Saskatchewan gave the thumbs down to the BHP bid for Potash. Yesterday afternoon, Canada's Industry Minister Tony Clement released a statement expressing a similar sentiment:
"I can confirm that I have sent a notice to BHP Billiton indicating that, at this time, I am not satisfied that the proposed transaction is likely to be of net benefit to Canada.
"I came to this decision after a careful and rigorous review of the proposed transaction. BHP Billiton has 30 days to make any additional representations and submit any undertakings.
"At the end of that period, I will make a final decision.
"The confidentiality provisions of the Investment Canada Act prohibit me from discussing specifics of an ongoing case.
"I can assure Canadians, however, that I will provide an explanation of the reasons behind my final decision at the time that decision is made, in accordance with the provisions of the Act.
"Canada has a long-standing reputation for welcoming foreign investment. The Government of Canada remains committed to maintaining an open climate for investment."
So the ball is now back in BHP's court. It looks like it's up to them to woo the government of Canada if they want this deal to happen.
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