TERRACE, B.C. — In a surprise decision Friday, the B.C. government rejected the offer of Mercer Intl. to purchase troubled Skeena Cellulose, in favor of a last minute offer by a B.C. lumber company.
NWBC Timber and Pulp came up with an offer at about 4 p.m. Thursday, which the government preferred, causing them to reject Mercer’s offer and give NWBC some more time to finalize their pitch.
Enterprise Minister, Rich Thorpe, said Mercer had asked for too many government concessions to be taken seriously.
“We were not prepared to fetter government forest policy and we were not prepared to put additional government subsidies in,” says Thorpe.
While confidentiality rules surround the NWBC offer, loggers and timber haulers are cautiously optimistic the deal will go through. There’s no word yet whether truckers who are still owed thousands of dollars by Skeena for unpaid work will ever see that money, but NWBC has reportedly offered to pay some of Skeena’s outstanding debts.
NWBC has until Feb. 8 to hammer out a deal with the province, and a Feb. 15 court appearance should hold some more answers.
Truck News is Canada's leading trucking newspaper - news and information for trucking companies, owner/operators, truck drivers and logistics professionals working in the Canadian trucking industry. All posts by Truck News