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Found 9 results

  1. CBC, VIA Rail considered for auction block: Documents BY ANDREW MAYEDA, CANWEST NEWS SERVICE JUNE 1, 2009 6:49 PM OTTAWA — The federal Department of Finance has flagged several prominent Crown corporations as "not self-sustaining," including the CBC, VIA Rail and the National Arts Centre, and has identified them as entities that could be sold as part of the government's asset review, newly released documents show. In its fiscal update last November, the government announced that it would launch a review of its Crown assets, including so-called enterprise Crown corporations, real estate and "other holdings." Finance Department documents, obtained by Canwest News Service under the Access to Information Act, reveal that the review will focus on enterprise Crown corporations, which are not financially dependent on parliamentary subsidies. Such corporations include the Royal Canadian Mint and Ridley Terminals, which is a coal-shipping terminal in Prince Rupert, B.C. But the documents also reveal that the government will consider privatizing Crown corporations that require public subsidies to stay afloat. "The reviews will also examine other holdings in which the government competes directly with private enterprises, earn income from property or performs a commercial activity," states a Finance briefing note dated Dec. 2, 2008. "It includes Crown corporations that are not self-sustaining even though they are of a commercial nature." In the briefing note, the Finance Department identifies nine Crown corporations that fall in that category, including Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd., the CBC and VIA Rail. The government announced last week that it will split AECL in two and seek private-sector investors for the Crown corporation's CANDU nuclear-reactor business. The Crown asset review comes as the government struggles to contain the country's deficit, now expected to top $50 billion this year. The Jan. 27 budget assumes that the government will be able to raise as much as $4 billion through asset sales by the end of March 2010. The budget identified four federal departments whose Crown assets are being reviewed first: Finance, Indian and Northern Affairs, Natural Resources, and Transport and Infrastructure. VIA Rail is overseen by the Transport Department, while the CBC and the National Arts Centre fall under the portfolio of the Canadian Heritage department. The Finance Department documents confirm that all government assets will eventually be reviewed. Privatizations tend to work well when Crown corporations enter a reasonably competitive market with a good chance of turning a profit, said Aidan Vining, a professor of business and government relations at Simon Fraser University. Unlike successfully privatized firms such as Canadian National Railway, it's not clear that CBC and VIA Rail could operate as profitable ventures while maintaining the public mandates they provided as Crown corporations, he noted. "They're not the classic privatization candidates, where you sell and walk away," said Vining, an expert in Crown corporation privatizations. "Unless, of course, you're prepared to fully withdraw from the public purpose (of the Crown corporation)." Certainly, the sale of a flagship Crown asset such as the CBC would be politically controversial. After the CBC announced this spring that it would lay off hundreds of employees, opposition critics accused the government of turning a cold shoulder to the public broadcaster's struggles. Under the Financial Administration Act, Parliament would have to approve the privatization of any Crown corporation. "It's hard to believe that some of these sales would go forward in a minority Parliament," said Vining. The Finance Department has also begun to examine the government's vast real-estate portfolio, which includes 31 million hectares of land, and more than 46,000 buildings totalling 103 million square metres — more than double the office space available in the Greater Toronto Area, according to the Finance documents. The government's holdings are worth at least $17 billion, Finance officials estimate. A briefing note labelled "secret" said that the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs acquired $7 million in surplus properties between 1998 and 2006 for potential use in land-claims deals. Over the same period, the properties cost $2 million to maintain. Divesting such properties could not only generate revenue for the government, but also cut "ongoing operations and maintenance costs," states the briefing note. A Finance Department spokeswoman said the asset review won't necessarily lead to sales in all cases. "Reviews will assess whether value could be created through changes to the assets' structure and ownership, and report on a wide set of options including the status quo, amendments to current mandates or governance," department spokeswoman Stephanie Rubec said in an e-mail. "In some cases, it may be concluded that selling an asset to a private sector entity may generate more economic activity and deliver greater value to taxpayers." Crown corporations identified by the government as "not self-sustaining": (Company name, commercial revenues, parliamentary subsidy, expenses) Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd., $614.2 million, $285.3 million, $1.3 billion CBC, $565.5 million, $1.1 billion, $1.7 billion Cape Breton Development Corp., $5.1 million, $60 million, $94.1 million Federal Bridge Corp. Ltd., $14.6 million, $31.0 million, $42.9 million National Arts Centre Corp., $26.0 million, $40.6 million, $65.7 million Old Port of Montreal Corp., $16.7 million, $15.1 million, $32.0 million Parc Downsview Park Inc., not available, not available, not available VIA Rail Canada Inc., $293.9 million, $266.2 million, $505.5 million Source: Department of Finance, Public Accounts of Canada Note: Financial results are for 2007-08 http://www.ottawacitizen.com/Rail+considered+auction+block+Documents/1652330/story.html
  2. La multinationale hollandaise Akzo Nobel annoncera aujourd'hui la vente les marques de peinture Para et Crown Diamond. Pour en lire plus...
  3. (Courtesy of CJAD) I am all for trying to get better prices and a larger selection of wine. Now the SAQ just needs to buy a spirits distributer in the US so we can get better prices on scotch, vodka and other hard alcohol.
  4. Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Doors+slam+shut+Lowe+Rona/7019504/story.html#ixzz22Js017vJ I wonder what will happen. The only way Lowe's will not be able to buy Rona, is if the Quebec government buys up the majority of the shares on the market or buys the whole company. If the Government buys up Rona, we will have a new crown corporation on our hands.
  5. Les usines automobiles canadiennes construisent principalement des voitures gourmandes en essence, telles les Dodge Magnum ou Ford Crown Victoria. Pour en lire plus...
  6. Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Montreal+police+Chargers/7123905/story.html#ixzz24F9CEr36 I saw one a few weeks back. I thought it was the SQ until I caught up with it at a light.
  7. http://content.usatoday.com/communities/driveon/post/2010/07/new-york-cabbies-love-old-ford-crown-victoria-not-hybrids/1?csp=34
  8. J'ai lu ça dans le Globe ce matin, mais rien nulle part ailleurs?? Si c'est vrai, ce serait alors un des plus gros projet d'infrastructure au Québec dans les prochaines années. OTTAWA — Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd. is fighting for its survival, as industry supporters say the federal government is preparing to pull the plug on the heavily subsidized Crown corporation if it loses a bid to build two nuclear reactors in Ontario. If the nuclear agency loses the multi-billion-dollar contract to one of two global players, Ottawa would blame the McGuinty government for the nuclear agency's demise, according to sources. The two governments - which have battled on several fronts - are engaged in a quiet game of chicken over Canada's flagship nuclear vendor and its network of Candu suppliers. The Ontario government wants to be assured that Ottawa has a long-term commitment to the nuclear supplier before selecting its ACR1000 reactor, which is still under development. Ottawa, meanwhile, is considering selling the company, and the result of the highly competitive Ontario bid will be an important factor in its decision. "The [Ontario] competition has accelerated for the feds the whole question of what they are going to do with AECL and the ACR1000 reactor," said Bryne Purchase, a former deputy energy minister in Ontario and now director of the energy and environment program at Queen's University. "This is not just about selling a reactor in Canada, it's critical to AECL's plans to compete in the world." AECL is competing with two much-larger foreign vendors, France's Areva Group, and U.S.-based Westinghouse Electric Co. LLC. Both those companies have access to commercial-type financing from their export credit agencies, and both have more prospects for sales than AECL, meaning they can spread development costs among more projects. As a result, AECL and its partners, led by SNC-Lavalin Group Inc., have asked Ottawa to provide financing and risk-sharing in order to keep its costs competitive. Last week, Natural Resources Minister Gary Lunn said the federal government stands behind AECL. In its most recent budget, the Harper government allocated $300-million to the Crown corporation to continue work on the ACR, and to refurbish its Chalk River research site. But some of AECL's Team Candu industry backers, which include Babcock & Wilcox Canada and GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy Canada, along with SNC-Lavalin Nuclear, worry that the Harper government is injecting just enough money into the company to prepare it for a sale, and to make a plausible - but not necessarily successful - run at the Ontario bid. They fear Ottawa will balk at providing the required billions of dollars in loan guarantees, nor will it wish, as AECL's lone shareholder, to assume the financial risk for potential cost overruns the province will almost certainly demand. AECL and its partners have acknowledged the critical nature of the Ontario decision for Team Candu. In a letter to Mr. Lunn obtained by The Globe and Mail, SNC-Lavalin Nuclear president Patrick Lamarre said an Ontario deal would be a "springboard to support our futures sales worldwide." Based on AECL's past share of the global nuclear market, Mr. Lamarre said the consortium could generate $100-billion for the Canadian economy. However, few people expect AECL to maintain its past market success, or match the heady prediction contained in its recently approved, five-year business plan that it will sell 25 reactors during the next 25 years, and four (including two in Ontario) during the next five years. In 1996, AECL forecast that it would sell 10 reactors over 10 years. It sold three - two to China and one to Romania, in a deal that was resuscitated from one that had begun under former dictator NicolaeCeausescu, and then was halted when his government collapsed. AECL got some good news yesterday for its booming business of refurbishing aged Candus. Hydro-Québec announced a $1.5-billion rebuild of its Gentilly-2 nuclear reactor, which will be completed by the federal corporation. Shawn-Patrick Stensil, an anti-nuclear campaigner for Greenpeace, said both levels of government appear to be looking to "outsource the blame" if AECL fails in Ontario and Ottawa decides to get out of the nuclear business. "The feds will blame the province and the province will say, 'We heeded the advice of outside experts,' " he said. (Ontario has set up an evaluation committee that includes its two nuclear operators, Ontario Power Generation and privately owned Bruce Power.) Since the Chinese and Romanian deals, AECL has been shut out of most promising markets, including the United States, which is itself heavily subsidizing the first few new reactors to be built in that country. Both Areva and General Electric Co. have expressed interest in buying AECL, which is prized for its existing reactor technology for smaller markets, its highly skilled work force, and its lucrative work in servicing Candu reactors around the world. Despite its challenges, however, AECL isn't out of the game in Ontario. While the province has said cost and on-time deliverability are key factors, a third one is the promise of industrial benefits for the province, and the Crown corporation has a deep supplier base in the province to give it an advantage on that score. At the same time, the province and the federal nuclear regulator have invested heavily in Candu know-how, and it will be costly to operate and regulate two