Oily

By Bryan • china, environment, nanjing • 1 Nov 2004

This past weeked has really backed up my work schedule, not a lot of time for posting, but I wanted to mention that everyone should read The Walrus. It’s sort of like the Canadian version of the very, very, very good Atlantic magazine.

Couldn’t resist this…for all of you people whining about how Canadian ‘soverigntry’ is being threatened by the United States.

Last month, China Minmetals, the metals trading arm of the Beijing government, agreed in principle to buy Noranda for about $7-billion (Canadian). Noranda, 42 per cent owned by Brascan, controls Falconbridge, meaning the Chinese are bagging two of the country’s top mining and smelting players in one fell swoop. Chinese oil companies are on the prowl. Sinopec is thought to be stalking Husky Energy, controlled by Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing. The Chinese government reportedly controls 53 big companies, each of which has been authorized to buy anything it needs anywhere on the planet. Red scare redux?

Falconbridge operates in the strategic Alberta Oil Sands….

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One Response

  1. Fraser

    One of my profs this semester used to be the CEO of Noranda’s Zinc business, so we hear a lot about this deal in class.

    The issue about the sale is the alleged forced working conditions that MinMetals has had in some of its mines. We’ll see what happens, but it looks like the deal will go through anyway.

    In any case, you’re going to see a lot of Chinese expansion economically for the next few decades as their big corporations play catch up with western ones. They will behave increasingly similarly to Western Multi-Nationals, and my guess is that Chinese companies won’t be too different from Western ones by the time China’s economy reaches the same size as that of the US (estimated to occur in about 40 years).

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