Canada's Enbridge Inc will take advantage of the uncertainty facing competitors' pipelines to gain market share, including starting early discussions on a new tolling agreement after 2022, a senior executive said on Thursday.
Speaking at an investors event in Toronto, Enbridge Executive Vice President Guy Jarvis did not name the rivals, saying only that customers still seek capacity amid the "lingering uncertainty around when and even if competing pipelines will ever come online."
An election in the Canadian province of British Columbia last month has complicated Kinder Morgan Inc's Trans
Mountain pipeline expansion, with the two parties set to take power vowing to block the project.
TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline project through the United States has presidential approval, but still needs permission from the state of Nebraska. The company's Energy East project to Canada's Atlantic coast had been mired in controversy, its regulatory review process suspended.
"We see a window of opportunity emerging now to start early discussions with our customers on a post-CTS tolling agreement," said Jarvis, referring to Enbridge's 10-year competitive tolling settlement for its Mainline system reached in 2011.
Enbridge, North America's largest energy infrastructure company, has forecast a rise in adjusted earnings this year following its purchase of Spectra Energy Corp. (SE)
Jarvis said the company will take advantage of its now larger scale and plans a possible expansion for its 280,000 barrel-per-day Express Pipeline that had once been Spectra's.
Enbridge is "laser-focused" in bringing online projects including its Line 3 Replacement Program from Hardisty, Alberta, to Superior, Wisconsin, Jarvis said.
"It's critical that we get it in service given the continuing uncertainties about competing pipelines," he said. "It then sets the foundation for developing the continued expansion of options on our Mainline."
(Reporting by Ethan Lou; Editing by Bernadette Baum)