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by Stockwatch Business Reporter
West Texas Intermediate crude for June delivery lost $2.26 to $63.82 on the New York Merc, while Brent for July lost $2.27 to $67.05 (all figures in this para U.S.). Western Canadian Select traded at a discount of $12.81 to WTI, unchanged. Natural gas for June was unchanged at $2.97. The TSX energy index lost 2.80 points to close at 123.24.
Another international energy company is taking a step back from Canada. Japan Petroleum Exploration, or Japex, announced this morning that it is selling its entire 10-per-cent interest in the North Montney shale gas project in British Columbia to its joint venturer, Malaysia's Petronas.
Japex acquired this interest from Petronas in 2013 for $1-billion. Asian investment in North American shale gas projects was popular at the time, especially with Japan growing increasingly reliant on LNG (liquefied natural gas) since the Fukushima disaster knocked out much of its nuclear power capacity in 2011. The North Montney arrangement between Japex and Petronas included an interest in a $36-billion LNG plant that Petronas was trying to build on Lelu Island (near Prince Rupert, B.C.). The North Montney project was said to hold enough gas to fill the massive LNG plant for 20 years. By 2018, declared the companies, the plant would be in service and the North Montney project would be a gas-producing powerhouse.
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