After a cost estimate hike last month, Trans Mountain pipeline faces yet another price hike of 44% from last year's estimated cost, Trans Mountain Corporation (TMC) announced.
According to a Reuters report on Friday, the cost of the government-owned Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion has increased to $22.35 billion (C$30.9 billion).
The corporation said it is currently in the process of securing external financing to fund the remaining cost of the project, which is expected to start shipping oil in the first quarter of 2024.
The pipeline expansion, which is set to nearly triple the flow of barrels from Alberta's oil sands to Canada's Pacific coast, has faced regulatory delays, environmental opposition, and significant budget overruns since the Canadian government purchased the pipeline from Kinder Morgan Inc. in 2018 to ensure that the expansion was completed, a move that drew sharp criticism from environmental groups.
Last month, TMC increased the cost estimate to C$21.4 billion, up from C$12.6 billion in 2020 and C$7.4 billion in 2017, prompting the Canadian government to stop any further public funding for the project.
Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland reiterated the government's plans to sell the pipeline once it is complete.
"As we committed to Canadians last year, no additional public money will be invested in this project as construction is completed," Freeland said in a statement.