Frequently Asked Questions: Ridley Terminals Inc.

Why is the federal government selling Ridley Terminals Inc?

The Government has been undertaking a systematic review of corporate assets as a normal part of good governance, which can contribute to the ongoing reallocation of financial resources to the highest priorities in order to maximize broad benefits to Canadian taxpayers.

The decision to consider a sale of Ridley Terminals is consistent with the Government’s commitment to the efficient use of public resources.

Ridley Terminals Inc. is the only major marine terminal that is owned and operated by the federal government. Other major marine terminals in Canada are privately run.

Private sector ownership of Ridley Terminals would align it with other major marine terminals in Canada, which are owned and operated by private companies.

Private ownership of the terminal could allow it to reach its full potential and maximize its contribution to economic growth, jobs and new investments in Prince Rupert and surrounding communities.

The decision to consider a sale of Ridley Terminals is consistent with previous efforts to ensure that the private sector manages transportation assets. These initiatives have included both privatization and commercialization of federal transportation assets. Since the 1980s, Transport Canada has:

  • Privatized transport Crown corporations such as the Canadian National Railways;
  • Commercialized Canada’s air traffic control system by selling assets to NAV Canada, a private, non-share capital, not-for-profit corporation;
  • Transferred the management and operation of Canada’s major airports, through a ground lease, to Airport Authorities;
  • Divested 107 airports that were formerly owned and operated by Transport Canada;
  • Commercialized the operation of the St. Lawrence Seaway to the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation, a not-for-profit corporation;
  • Created 18 Canada Port Authorities as arm’s-length, independent entities that operate on a commercial basis; and
  • Divested 179 ports that were formerly owned and operated by Transport Canada.

For years, Ridley Terminals declared losses and required millions in government support. Presently, Ridley Terminals is an asset of considerable value.

What other assets is the Government considering selling?

The Government of Canada is reviewing its corporate assets to improve their governance, to ensure the efficient use of public resources, and to ensure value to taxpayers.

Corporate assets include enterprise Crown corporations, which are not dependent on appropriations, earn most of their revenues from the sale of goods and services, and in some cases compete with private enterprises. The review also considers government real property holdings that could be developed by the private sector to stimulate local economic development. Finally, the review covers other assets where the Government competes directly with private enterprises, earns income from a property, or performs a commercial activity.

There is a range of potential outcomes with respect to the review of specific assets. These could include no change to the structure or ownership of the asset, a reorganization of the corporate structure, alternative governance structures and the sale of an asset.

The Government will take into account market conditions before any sale to ensure the best value is realized for taxpayers and transactions generate new economic activity.

How much is the Government expecting to receive for Ridley Terminals?

The Government of Canada will ensure that it receives fair value for Ridley Terminals by following a competitive bidding process. It would not be appropriate to speculate about the amount that could be realized. The Government will only proceed with a sale if it maximizes value for taxpayers.

What is the Canada Development Investment Corporation (CDIC)’s role?

CDIC is a federal Crown corporation under the responsibility of the Minister of Finance. Its mandate is to manage commercial holdings of the Government, acting in the best interests of Canada and operating in a commercial manner.

CDIC has been asked to act as an agent of the Government to ensure that the sale process is carried out using best commercial practices and to secure the best return for Canadian taxpayers.

What is the process for submitting bids/proposals?

Parties interested in the sales process should contact the Canada Development Investment Corporation (CDIC), at RTI_info@cdiccei.ca.