TRUJILLO, Honduras — A 32-year-old British Columbia pilot who was killed in a plane crash in Honduras on Saturday is being described by his father as a spontaneous person who was a happy child.Larry Forseth said in a phone interview with The Canadian Press from Honduras that he had spoken with his son Patrick earlier on the morning of the crash.Patrick Forseth, who also goes by Danny, told his father of a “minor issue with a battery terminal,” he said.“The cable to the battery was loose so the plane would not start … and he had a mechanic come … and he fixed the problem,” Larry Forseth said.“That was fine and the plane started and everything was normal. And shortly after departure this horrible, horrible tragedy happened.”Larry Forseth said the family is not sure what happened but believes it was a private flight, and that the plane crashed into the water just off the shore of Roatan.Global Affairs Canada confirmed Sunday a Canadian citizen had died in the crash, but did not identify the person due to privacy concerns.Stefano Maron said consular officials in the capital, Tegucigalpa, were in contact with local authorities and were providing assistance to the victim’s family.The Piper Cherokee Six plummeted into the Atlantic shortly after takeoff from Roatan en route to Trujillo, a port city on Honduras’s northern coast.The Associated Press reported that the other victims of the crash were four American passengers, citing an Armed Forces spokesman.The Honduran military said in a statement that rescue boats with police divers and firemen recovered four bodies within minutes of the crash and transported another to a hospital, where he died shortly after of internal injuries.The U.S. State Department also confirmed the deaths of four American citizens.Larry Forseth said the family is trying to piece together the tragedy.His son was a “very experienced” pilot who had trained at the Coastal Pacific Aviation school in Abbotsford, B.C., he said, adding that Patrick had also flown for companies in Canada.“I’ve been a commercial pilot all my life and I’ve spent many hours in the air with him and he’s a very capable, very professional pilot.”The family is “not doing good,” Larry Forseth said.“We are taking it very badly,” he said. “He was way too young …. It’s a horrible thing to lose your child and he was a very special child. And we are a very close family.”Patrick Forseth has a number of friends in the area and was loved by everyone, he said.The father described his son as a “happy child, always smiling” growing up. He said his son loved to build tree forts and was good with his hands.Forseth also described his son as a jokester, saying he was the life of the party.“So spontaneous … and he would talk about anything and everything and have people laughing and having fun,” he said wistfully. “He was a very social, outgoing person.”Forseth’s remains were cremated Monday, and a few pilots in the area gathered later in the day to pay tribute.His ashes will be taken to the little town of Trullio for a celebration of life, and after that the family, who spends a few months in B.C. and a few in Honduras, plans to return to Canada for a similar gathering with relatives and friends.“It’s very difficult. You should not lose a child. They should not pass away before their parents,” Forseth said breaking down.“It’s just not right. You should not have to bury your child. Oh, it’s hard.”—By Hina Alam in Vancouver with files from Associated PressThe Canadian Press
OTTAWA (NEWS 1130) – Ahead of the federal election, hotels, motels, and resorts across Canada are calling on political parties to crack down on short-term online rentals.According to the Hotel Association of Canada, the laws around online rental companies like Airbnb are out of date.Members are urging parties to make a change, and even the playing field.At an announcement this morning by the Hotel Association of Canada, calling on federal parties to crack down on business policies around online short term rentals like Airbnb #cdnpoli pic.twitter.com/dv1rXvuSC5— Cormac Mac Sweeney (@cmaconthehill) July 17, 2019“These platforms continue to reap the benefits without paying their fair share,” the association’s Alana Baker says.The group would like to see the federal government start treating short-term rentals like every other hotel or motel in Canada, and is calling on federal parties to include in their election platforms a plan to charge these types of companies Canadian corporate income tax, and to apply GST or HST to consumers.Baker says Canadians are currently losing out on a lot of tax revenue.“With estimated losses of $169-million in sales tax revenues alone,” she explains, claiming short-term rentals can also have unintended consequences.The Hotel Association claims there are many unintended consequences to operations like Airbnb #cdnpoli pic.twitter.com/HsPb0Tndg2— Cormac Mac Sweeney (@cmaconthehill) July 17, 2019Steve Ball with the Ottawa Gatineau Hotel Association likens Airbnb to a virus, and echos the concern that short-term rentals can have negative impacts on the cities and communities they’re in.“Less available housing for residents to live in, soaring rental prices making housing affordable for families, escalating community nuisances,” he explains.The group has spoken with federal parties, but has yet to receive any commitments.Airbnb says hotel industry ‘peddling lies’Meantime, Airbnb is responding to the latest calls by the Hotel Association, saying “the big corporate hotels are at it again.”In a statement, the company says hotels are “peddling lies about homesharing” in an effort to “protect their ability to price gouge consumers, and preserve outdated business models.”“Home sharing and vacation rentals have always been an important part of Canada’s tourism economy,” Alexandra Dagg, who speaks for Airbnb, says. “Today, regular people in communities large and small are making extra money sharing their space — but hotels have made it clear they want to eliminate any competition.”Dagg suggests Airbnb has been a “responsible partner to governments,” and says the company has worked with provincial and municipal governments to “collect and remit tourism taxes.”Statement from @Airbnb in response to the @hotelassoc call for federal action on short term online rentals #cdnpoli pic.twitter.com/1Cl5uToEeg— Cormac Mac Sweeney (@cmaconthehill) July 17, 2019
OTTAWA — Transport Canada says it’s lifting speed restrictions for cargo ships in the Gulf of St. Lawrence after recent surveillance failed to detect North Atlantic right whales in shipping lanes.The agency says in a statement released Friday evening that the government’s aerial surveillance team monitored shipping lanes closely over the past month.It says its National Aerial Surveillance Program spent 240 flight hours in 44 missions scouring the waters.They say whale surveillance will continue and that speed restrictions will resume if right whales are found in shipping lanes.The interim slowdown was first implemented in April and expanded in area in June and July.Transport Canada says during the slowdown period that vessels started using routes other than shipping lanes, including zones where right whales are known to gather.“This has resulted in more marine traffic coming closer to known whale locations,” the statement says.“In order to encourage vessel traffic in areas where no North Atlantic right whales have been spotted, vessels will once again be able to maximize efficient routes to transit through the Gulf.”They say they’re prepared to adjust measures if necessary.There are about 400 right whales left on the planet and eight deaths reported in Canadian waters since early June.The Canadian Press
The Canadian Press MONTREAL — Residents in Justin Trudeau’s home riding expressed support for the Liberal leader on Thursday as he dealt with the fallout of old photos showing him in skin-darkening makeup.In Montreal’s multi-ethnic Papineau riding, people interviewed from different cultural communities said they don’t think Trudeau meant to offend.Sani Piameng, the owner of an African butcher shop and grocery store, says Trudeau has often visited his store and even watched soccer games with him and his customers.He says Trudeau is not a racist, and that’s more important than photos taken nearly 20 years ago.Zahid Nassar, an immigrant from Pakistan, says he’s not bothered by the images because many people do regrettable things when they’re young.Members of Quebec’s political class have condemned the photos, which show Trudeau wearing blackface and brownface on at least three occasions, ranging from a high school talent show to an Arabian Nights-themed party in 2001 when he was 29.This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 19, 2019.
Mark Wahlberg, with other top entertainment and sport personalities such as Rasta Phil, helped CIBC employees and clients raise a record $4.5 million for Canadian children’s charities on Miracle Day just before Christmas.“I know first-hand the important work done by charities and organizations that support youth,” said Mr. Wahlberg. “As a kid, I was fortunate enough to spend my free time in the positive and nurturing environment of the Boys and Girls club. I am pleased to support CIBC Miracle Day because together we can make a difference.”Held this year on Dec. 5, CIBC’s Miracle Day is the annual flagship fundraising event for the CIBC Children’s Foundation. It has raised a total of nearly $69 million donated to hundreds of children’s charities across Canada since 1984.“This year’s Miracle Day was an incredibly successful day for the CIBC Children’s Foundation, thanks in part to the presence of personalities like Mark Wahlberg and Rasta Phil,” said Allison White Gryspeerdt , Senior Manager of National Programs for CIBC Children’s Foundation.“I am glad to have been involved in this year’s Miracle Day event and helped to raise more attention for the CIBC Children’s Foundation,” says Rasta Phil, aka Phil Thomas, who is a music star and mentor/advisor/co-producer to many famous artists and music groups via his company Rasta Phil Entertainment, including Mark Wahlberg and the New Edition. “It is an important charitable event that deserves to get all the funds possible to support children’s needs across the country.”Source:PR Newswire
On Tuesday, October 15, 2013, the Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF) will present its 12th annual An Enduring Vision benefit at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City.The Foundation welcomes back award-winning CNN anchor Anderson Cooper, who will host the event for a seventh consecutive year.Founder Sir Elton John and Chairman David Furnish will present EJAF’s very first Founder’s Award to Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. Secretary Clinton’s ground-breaking speech in Geneva declaring that “gay rights are human rights and human rights are gay rights” and the bold plan for an AIDS-free generation she presented at the International AIDS Conference epitomize EJAF’s concept of “an enduring vision of a world without AIDS.”They will also present EJAF’s Enduring Vision Awards to Sandra Lee, Ronald O. Perelman, and Howard Rose. Multiple Emmy Award-winning television host and magazine editor-in-chief Sandra Lee is a long-time supporter of EJAF and other HIV/AIDS and LGBT civil rights organizations, as well as serving as the national spokesperson for the No Kid Hungry campaign and a founding board member of UNICEF’s Los Angeles chapter. Devoted EJAF supporter Ronald O. Perelman, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings, is a major philanthropist who has made numerous multi-million dollar gifts to health, education, civic, and arts organizations across the country. Founding EJAF Board member Howard Rose has generously assisted the Foundation in all areas of its work since its inception, from the initial and continued development of a variety of fund-raising events to building individual and corporate relationships.Sir Elton John and David Furnish serve as the honorary chairs for An Enduring Vision, joined by their Co-Chairs Bill and Tani Austin, Alec and Hilaria Baldwin, Johnny and Edwina Barbis, Jennifer Bayer Michaels, Joseph W. Blount, John Demsey, Jennifer Kelly Dominiquini, Frank Giustra, Tim Hanlon and Anthony Klatt, Hugh Jackman and Deborra-lee Furness, Diana Jenkins, Donna Karan, Robert K. Kraft, Leonard A. Lauder, Peter Luukko, Jay Marciano, Tamara Mellon, OBE, Leslie Moonves, James L. Nederlander, Martha Nelson, Melissa Ormond, Michael Rapino, Lily Safra, Ingrid Sischy and Sandra Brant, Alexandra Stanton and Sam Natapoff, Edward Walson, and Roger Woolsey.Presenting Sponsors for the event are American Airlines, Frank Giustra, Robert K. Kraft, and Wells Fargo.Co-Sponsors are Joseph W. Blount, The John R. Eckel Jr. Foundation, The Lauder Foundation, Live Nation, Ronald O. Perelman, and the Starkey Hearing Foundation.Gold Sponsors are The Steven A. and Alexandra M. Cohen Foundation, Caesars Palace, Edmond J. Safra Foundation, M•A•C Viva Glam, Million Air, and Service Electric Company/Sunrider Productions.For ticket information, please contact Andreas Schwarz at the Elton John AIDS Foundation, 212.219.0670 or email@example.com.
Casualty actress Gemma Atkinson rode the 2014 Great Manchester Cycle for charity.Gemma Atkinson Completes The 2014 Great Manchester CycleCredit/Copyright: Royal Manchester Children’s HospitalThe former Hollyoaks star rode 52 miles for Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital Charity Event on Sunday 29th June.Gemma Atkinson Rides The 2014 Great Manchester CycleCredit/Copyright: Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital8,000 riders took to the closed roads of Manchester for the event.Gemma – from Bury – rode the event’s longest distance of 52 miles to raise money for Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital Charity, a charity she has completed a number of events for in the past including the Great Manchester Run.The actress and model was excited to return to her home city do her bit for a local charity, as she’s recently been busy filming Casualty in Cardiff as her character, paramedic Tamzin Bayle, made a dramatic return to the series last month.“I’m really pleased to be able to do something for Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital and to help them raise funds,” she said. “They do wonderful work and it’s a very worthy cause and one I’m proud to be contributing to.”She continued, “I know the event is going to be spectacular and a really fun day for everyone taking part.”Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital Charity raises funds to ensure continued excellence in treatment, care and research at the hospital – improving the lives of thousands of children each year across the North West and beyond.The Charity has three main areas of work: To support research projects to improve our understanding of children’s illnesses; To help to create an environment that’s more child-friendly; To provide state-of-the-art equipment for diagnosis and treatment.Find out more here.
Shire plc announced today its partnership with the Binge Eating Disorder Association (BEDA), the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA), and globally-renowned tennis player Monica Seles to launch the first-ever, large-scale national effort to raise awareness of Binge Eating Disorder (B.E.D.) in adults.Video: Tennis champion, Monica Seles, shares her story about Binge Eating Disorder (B.E.D.) (:60)This expert team is joining forces to motivate adults who may struggle with B.E.D. symptoms to learn more and talk to their health care provider.B.E.D. is a distinct medical condition recognized by the American Psychiatric Association. It is a more common eating disorder than anorexia and bulimia combined, affecting an estimated 2.8 million US adults, according to a national survey. B.E.D. is characterized by regularly eating far more food than most people would eat in a similar time period, with binges taking place on at least a weekly basis for three months. Adults with B.E.D. feel that their eating is out of control during a binge and find binges very upsetting, among other symptoms. B.E.D. is more than overeating and, unlike other eating disorders, people with B.E.D. don’t routinely try to “undo” their excessive eating with extreme actions like purging or over-exercising. B.E.D. occurs in both men and women.“There is a misconception that adults with B.E.D. fit a certain profile” said Monica Seles. “I felt ashamed about my binge eating for so long, and my hope is that hearing the stories of people like me, and having information about the disorder more publicly available, may help inspire other adults to get the support they need.”Seles also wrote about her experience in her book, Getting a Grip: On My Body, My Mind, My Self.The national campaign is also supported by the efforts of Sunny Sea Gold, author of Food: the Good Girl’s Drug. “It wasn’t until I started getting help that I really understood that B.E.D. is not a personality issue, but a real, medical disorder affecting many adults,” said Sunny Sea Gold. “This empowered me to start having productive conversations with my family and my health care providers.”The campaign website, BingeEatingDisorder.com, features information about B.E.D. and how to recognize the symptoms, its potential causes, experiences of others with B.E.D., including a series of public service announcements (PSAs), and tips for how to raise the topic with health care providers and loved ones.“We are proud to be joined by such a great team of partners to provide education for adults who may have B.E.D.,” said Perry Sternberg, Head of Shire’s Neuroscience Business Unit. “Shire’s focus on awareness of B.E.D. in adults is part of our ongoing commitment to meeting unmet needs of adults with this condition.”“We are aware that many adults may experience symptoms for a long time before speaking to a health care provider, and we hope that this will help encourage them to get the support they need,” said Chevese Turner, Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer, BEDA. “We are thrilled to be able to continue our work supporting adults with B.E.D. with the launch of this campaign.”While B.E.D. often starts in early adulthood, only 3 percent of US adults in an online survey who met B.E.D. criteria in the past 12 months reported having been diagnosed with the condition by a health care provider. Additionally, fewer than 50 percent of adults with B.E.D. are obese, based on a national survey of U.S. adults.“We are pleased to be participating in this campaign as it fits within NEDA’s overall commitment to raising awareness of eating disorders,” said Lynn Grefe, CEO and President. “Given the prevalence and lack of awareness of B.E.D., we feel it essential to bring particular attention to B.E.D. as the most common eating disorder among US adults.”
Swiss luxury brand Bally continued its on-going partnership with charity Delete Blood Cancer DKMS, with an event to celebrate the brand’s recently opened Beverly Hills flagship store.Randy Jackson attends Bally eventThe exclusive evening was held at the Bally Flagship Store at Rodeo Drive on Tuesday 17th May 2016 from 6PM to 8:30pm. Hosted by Grammy-award winning record producer Randy Jackson, DKMS co-founder Katharina Harf and Bally Americas CEO Claudia Cividino, the exclusive cocktail evening featured a special performance from Grammy nominated recording artist Jazmine Sullivan.To mark this collaboration Bally designed a limited edition red leather envelope, in calf leather and water snake skin, priced at $350 and $850 respectively. The envelopes were available to purchase at the exclusive event, with all proceeds going to Delete Blood Cancer DKMS. 20% of all other sales from the evening were also donated to the cause.
Supernatural star Jared Padalecki has launched a new clothing design as part of his Always Keep Fighting mental health initiative.Jared Padalecki I Am EnoughThe t-shirts, sweatshirts and more are part of the star’s new I Am Enough campaign. As with so many of his campaigns, charity continues to be an important part of the AKF and I Am Enough message. Whether you want the proceeds of your shirt to help the victims of the Pulse shooting or you want to help continue the fight of ending the social stigma around mental health, Jared’s made it possible for you to pick what matters most to you!The shirts are available from Represent.com. Click here to order.And Game Of Thrones star Maisie Williams has also designed a t-shirt for charity.Maisie Williams Making A List TeeThe shirts, which feature Maisie as her GOT character Arya, are benefiting Dolphin Project.“So proud and excited to, finally, be releasing these tee’s – I hope you love them as much as I do,” said Maisie. “Get yours now before they’re gone!”These shirts are only available for a few more days, so be QUICK and click here.
The Adrienne Shelly Foundation will hold its 10th Annual Anniversary Celebration on December 5, in NYC.The cocktail/dinner event will feature a Special Introduction by Sara Bareilles, as well as a live music performance by Jesse Mueller and Waitress cast members including Charity Angel Dawson and Caitlin Houlahan. It will also feature a reading of The “O” Letters by Hilarie Burton, Michael Cerveris, Rachel Dratch, Julianna Margulies, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Salman Rushdie and Keri Russell, as well as a reading by Salman Rushdie from his novel “The Ground Beneath Her Feet”. This much-anticipated evening will include cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, food stations, an open-mic in Adrienne’s remembrance.WHEN: Monday, December 5, 2016, 7pm – 10pmWHERE: Angel Orensanz located at 172 Norfolk Street in New York CityMore info can be found here.The Adrienne Shelly Foundation (ASF) was named after Adrienne Shelly, a very talented actor/writer/director (WAITRESS) who was murdered November 1, 2006. The Foundation was created the following month with a simple mission: Supporting Women Filmmakers. It serves as an advocate for female artists, championing them as the precious independent spirits they are, helping them get their work created, produced and onto the public stage. Since its inception, ASF has awarded over 60 production grants to very talented filmmakers across the globe. Its partnerships include The Sundance Institute, American Film Institute, Women in Film, IFP, Tribeca Film Institute, Columbia University, Boston University, Rooftop Films, The Nantucket Film Festival, Athena Film Festival and The Horizon Award. One of its grant recipients, Cynthia Wade, won an Oscar in 2008 for her documentary FREEHELD, which ASF helped fund. Other notable recipients include Sarah Gertrude Shapiro (UNREAL), Dee Rees (PARIAH), Ana Lily Amirpour (A GIRL WALKS HOME ALONE AT NIGHT), Cherien Dabis (AMREEKA) and Annie Sundberg/Ricki Stern (JOAN RIVERS: A PIECE OF WORK).
Twitter Facebook The Toronto International Film Festival has cancelled a press conference scheduled for Tuesday in light of Sunday night’s shooting in the city.Festival officials said in a statement they have scrapped the event “out of respect for those affected.”They added: “The Toronto Danforth area is the gold standard of our city’s vibrancy and we stand with our fellow Torontonians in condemnation of this violence.”A message regarding our planned #TIFF18 press conference. #TorontoStrong https://t.co/culT8EDbbj pic.twitter.com/U12e6PLWmK— TIFF (@TIFF_NET) July 23, 2018 Login/Register With: Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment The press conference is expected to announce the first batch of titles headed to the festival, which runs Sept. 6-Sept. 16.The festival says it will make Tuesday’s announcement via press release instead.Toronto police said two people were killed and 13 others were injured in the shooting, which took place on a bustling stretch of Danforth Avenue.The suspected 29-year-old gunman exchanged fire with officers and was found dead near the scene, police said. Advertisement Advertisement
APTN National NewsIt’s been almost two months since the Crown-First Nations gathering brought 400 chiefs to Ottawa.The Harper government claimed the meeting would strengthen relations with First Nations.Two months later, has anything come out of the gathering with Prime Minister Stephen Harper?Some critics say it was a failure.But Ovide Mercredi, the former national chief of the Assembly of First Nations says it’s too early to say.
APTN National NewsThey say an image is worth a thousand of words and this saying particularly applies to what is happening in Montreal this week.An outdoor photo exhibit exposed people in Montreal this week to a dark chapter in Canada’s history.APTN’s Danielle Rochette reports.
The Canadian PressThe Kashechewan First Nation in northern Ontario has an agreement with the federal and provincial governments that lays out a plan to move the reserve annually threatened by flood waters.Kashechewan, located north of Fort Albany, Ont., along the James Bay coast, has had to repeatedly evacuate from flooding and infrastructure problems, including last month when a state of emergency forced more than 2,500 members to fly to other locations across the province.“I hope that the people of Kashechewan, who have been evacuated for several weeks now as a precautionary measure, will soon be able to return home safely, knowing that we hear them and are acting,” said Indigenous Services Minister Seamus O’Regan.The First Nation has been asking for years to be relocated to higher ground.In front of 300 community members today, the federal and provincial governments signed an agreement with the First Nation to commit to moving the reserve.Indigenous O’Regan said the relocation process will likely take around eight years under the terms of the agreement that he hopes assures the community that it will not face flooding issues forever.“I would like to thank Chief Leo Friday, Regional Chief RoseAnne Archibald, Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler and Grand Chief Jonathan Solomon for their efforts to advance this crucial work together,” said O’Regan.“With this Framework Agreement in place, we have a clear path forward to meet the needs of the community, both in the immediate and long term.”NDP MP Charlie Angus, whose riding includes Kashechewan, calls the deal a very important step and says it is the result of pressure from the community who are tired of spending their springs in evacuation centres.Ontario’s Minister of Indigenous Affairs Greg Rickford says the province is on board.“The Ontario Government is committed to do everything in its authority to support the relocation of Kashechewan First Nation,” Rickford said in a firstname.lastname@example.org
TORONTO – Canada’s main stock index closed lower Friday, but off its lows for the day, after markets reassessed U.S. President Donald Trump’s latest statements about imposing stiff tariffs on steel and aluminum.A global sell-off in stocks that began Thursday came back around to North America in morning trading after the president doubled down against growing backlash, saying “trade wars are good.”If a trade war does indeed break out, it could threaten a strengthening global economy, but investors seemed to question how far Trump will end up going throughout afternoon trading.The S&P/TSX composite index finished down 9.36 points to 15,384.59, led by losses in the base metals and energy sectors.South of the border, U.S. stocks worked their way back from much steeper losses, finishing Friday mixed.The Dow Jones industrial average was down 70.92 points to 24,538.06. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 index was up 13.58 points to 2,691.25 and the Nasdaq composite index was up 77.31 points to 7,257.87.Trump told industry executives Thursday he plans to impose a tariff of 25 per cent on imported steel and 10 per cent on aluminum, sparking fears of escalating retaliation between countries. While China shrugged of the proposed tariffs, the president of the European Union’s governing body suggested possible tariffs on blue jeans and motorcycles.“But unless there’s a follow through from trading partners in terms of retaliatory issues I don’t think it’s going to be that big an issue for the markets or the economy in general,” said Noman Ali, a portfolio manager with Manulife Asset Management.“It’s really a limited impact in some small, specific industries.”In currency markets, the Canadian dollar was trading at 77.57 cents US, down 0.24 of a U.S. cent.On the commodities front, the May copper contract was unchanged to US$3.12 a pound and the April gold contract was up US$18.20 to US$1,323.40 an ounce. Bullion usually rises when investors are feeling more nervous about inflation and the economy.The April crude contract was up 26 cents to US$61.25 per barrel and the April natural gas contract was unchanged at US$2.70 per mmBTU.— With a file from The Associated Press
CALGARY – Negotiations on commercial deals to improve reliability at the problem-plagued Syncrude oilsands mine and upgrader need to “make sense for all parties,” the CEO of its second-largest owner said on a conference call Friday.Rich Kruger of Imperial Oil Ltd., which owns 25 per cent of the four-decades-old project in northern Alberta, said his company is co-operating in discussions to find ways to improve Syncrude performance, especially after a power outage in June shut down the 350,000-barrel-per-day project.On Thursday, Steve Williams, CEO of majority owner Suncor Energy Inc., said other partners in Syncrude don’t have a “sense of urgency or support” to negotiate a commercial deal, noting there’s a proposal to build pipelines to connect Syncrude with the nearby Suncor Base Plant to allow greater integration of production operations.Imperial is “focused like a laser” on changes to the corporate structure at Syncrude to make it more efficient, Kruger said on the call to discuss second-quarter results, without referring specifically to Williams’ remarks.He said Imperial and its American parent company, ExxonMobil, have 120 people seconded to Syncrude under their management services contract and there is already co-operation with Suncor on regional logistics and warehousing.“Now we’re looking at … are there commercial arrangements that can be constructed that can help on both sides of the fence and I think, like all commercial arrangements, they need to make sense for all parties in the deal,” he said.“And we are working on a belief there are commercial enhancements that can be achieved here at Syncrude. If it can enhance value at Syncrude, we are 100 per cent behind it.”The Syncrude upgrader has been partially repaired since the June incident but isn’t expected to return to full operation until September.The Syncrude consortium also includes subsidiaries of Chinese companies Sinopec and CNOOC. Suncor’s share in Syncrude has grown from about 12 per cent to the current 58.74 per cent over the past three years through the purchase of Canadian Oil Sands Ltd. and minor stakes owned by Mitsubishi Corp. and Murphy Oil.Imperial reported a profit of $196 million or 24 cents per share in the three months ended June 30, beating the year-earlier loss of $77 million or nine cents, but falling short of analysts estimates of $495 million or 53 cents per share according to Thomson Reuters Eikon.Total revenue was $9.5 billion, up about $2.5 billion from a year earlier, and ahead of estimates of $8.8 billion.The results were rated “negative” by analyst Nick Lupick of AltaCorp Capital due to a material miss on cash flow linked to the higher-than-expected impact of planned maintenance.Imperial is poised to improve its performance in the second half of the year after completing its major maintenance programs, notably at its Edmonton-area Strathcona Refinery, and the disappointing performance of Syncrude in the quarter, Kruger said.The Calgary-based company will update its plans for its proposed two-phase, 150,000-barrel-per-day Aspen project, which will use solvent and steam to produce bitumen from wells, at its investor day in October or November, Kruger said.He repeated criticism of the length of time it has taken the Alberta Energy Regulator to produce a decision for the $2.5-billion-per-phase project, noting an application was first submitted in 2013 and the regulator ruled its environmental impact assessment was complete in 2016.AER spokeswoman Cassie Naas said the review period was prolonged due to changes to the application and First Nation consultation adequacy requirements, adding a hearing is expected to be called by commissioners who are reviewing application materials and statements of concern.Several different applications have been submitted at different times since December 2013 with the most recent, for Public Lands Act approvals, submitted in May 2017, she said.Follow @HealingSlowly on Twitter.Companies in this story: (TSX:IMO, TSX:SU)
TORONTO – Shares in several major Canadian forestry companies closed down Wednesday after an analyst downgrade and lower-than expected building permits for the crucial U.S. housing sector.CIBC analyst Hamir Patel said in a note that the bank has reduced its outlook on the industry, including downgrades on Interfor Corp., Resolute Forest Products Inc., and West Fraser Timber Co., as concerns mount about U.S. housing.“With more warnings signs flashing in the U.S. housing market…we are now moving to the sidelines on all commodity wood product stock,” wrote Patel.Canfor Corp. closed down six per cent, Resolute ended down 4.5 per cent, Interfor down four per cent, and West Fraser down 3.9 per cent.The shift came as the U.S. Commerce Department said Wednesday that applications for building permits, seen as a reliable indicator of future activity, fell by 5.7 per cent in August after a 0.9 per cent rise in July. Permit applications have been down four of the past five months.The reading is quite a bit weaker than expected and shows that permits have clearly faded from the cycle high in March, said BMO senior economist Robert Kavcic in a note.“This is consistent with our view that residential construction looks to be largely a wash on overall economic growth at this stage of the cycle.”The drop in permits contrasted with a surprise 9.2 per cent jump in August housing starts, but Kavcic said it was largely a catch-up move from slumps in the previous two months.The signs of potential slowing come after a strong run for the industry, supported by tight supplies and a rebounding housing sector that have pushed prices up to all-time highs this summer.Patel noted that a strong first half of the year and a “decent” third quarter have set the industry up for what could be a record year.High lumber prices have also helped insulate the industry from the softwood lumber tariffs the U.S. imposed in April, 2017 that average just over 20 per cent.Western softwood lumber prices have averaged US$536 per thousand board feet this year, up from US$401 last year. Prices peaked at more than US$650 per thousand board feet in June but have since plunged, falling 14 per cent in the last two weeks alone to US$412, said Patel.The tariffs came after a 2006 softwood lumber agreement expired in October 2015. Last week, a group of U.S. senators urged U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to reach a new softwood lumber agreement because of the high lumber prices caused by the tariffs.Companies in this story: (TSX:WFT, TSX:CFP, TSX:RFP, TSX:IFP)
WASHINGTON — Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell says the U.S. economy is performing well but he’s eyeing potential risks ahead.Those include a slowdown in global growth, the fading impact from tax cuts and the cumulative weight of the Fed’s own interest rate hikes.Speaking Wednesday to an audience at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, Powell said the Fed is managing interest rates in an effort to prolong the current economic recovery.He said the increased political attacks on the Fed will not divert the central bank from doing its job.President Donald Trump has called the Fed’s rate hikes his “biggest threat.”But Powell told his audience that the Fed has the tools and the protections it needs to serve the public in a “non-partisan, professional way.”Martin Crutsinger, The Associated Press
NEW YORK — Jared Kushner’s family company plans to buy another property in a New Jersey beach town where developers can get big tax breaks thanks to a new federal program pushed by Kushner and his wife, Ivanka Trump.Long Branch Business Administrator George Jackson says Kushner Cos. is negotiating to buy in the Lower Broadway section of Long Branch, New Jersey. The property is in one of thousands of Opportunity Zones that the federal government approved earlier this year offering tax breaks to entice investment in high poverty areas.It would be the fourth Kushner purchase in an Opportunity Zone in Long Branch since the program was included in last year’s tax overhaul law. Ethics expert say Kushner’s push for the program in Washington raises conflicts of interest issues.Bernard Condon, The Associated Press