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by Stockwatch Business Reporter
West Texas Intermediate crude for February delivery lost 74 cents to $60.44 on the New York Merc, while Brent for February lost 40 cents to $66.14 (all figures in this para U.S.). Western Canadian Select traded at a discount of $21.95 to WTI, unchanged. Natural gas for January added six cents to $2.33. The TSX energy index lost a fraction to close at 143.37.
Shrugging off objections that it is abusing its market power, Enbridge is pressing ahead with controversial plans to overhaul its Mainline pipeline system. The Mainline makes up about three-quarters of Western Canadian oil export capacity. Since it entered service roughly 70 years ago, it has been run with 100 per cent of its capacity available for uncontracted or spot transportation, available to any shipper regardless of size (like a common carrier railway, but for pipelined oil). Now Enbridge wants to move 90 per cent of the capacity over to a contract system, effective once the current spot tolling system expires in mid-2021. It says the shift will bring the Mainline's commercial structure in line with other federally regulated pipelines and lead to greater certainty for shippers.
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