Talks break down between province, NWBC

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VICTORIA, B.C. — The ongoing saga concerning Skeena Cellulose continues, as the province has called off talks with NWBC Timber and Pulp.

NWBC was seen as a last-minute savior when talks broke down with Mercer International. But the province says that NWBC failed to fulfil a key condition of its offer to purchase.

“NWBC has not complied with its obligation to provide a key financing commitment as was stipulated in its signed offer to purchase,” says Rick Thorpe, Minister of Competition, Science and Enterprise. “As a result of this non-compliance, the exclusivity agreement is at an end.”

At least two other companies have expressed interest in buying Skeena and their proposals will be considered over the next few days.

In northwestern B.C., mill workers and truckers who count on Skeena for their livelihoods have been left in limbo since the province forced the sale of Skeena.

“Obviously the continuing uncertainty surrounding the future of Skeena Cellulose has been difficult for people of the northwest and the many families whose livelihoods depend on the company’s operations,” says Thorpe. “We will consider carefully the impact of any decision on the families and communities of the northwest region of the province.”

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