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Bloomberg: Inter Pipeline to Buy Kinder Morgan Oil-Sands Line (Update1)

By Jim Polson

March 5 (Bloomberg) — Inter Pipeline Fund agreed to buy the Corridor pipeline system in Alberta from Kinder Morgan Inc. for C$275 million ($233 million) to become the largest shipper of bitumen from the province’s oil sands.

The Corridor system transports diluted bitumen, a heavy oil, from the Athabasca oil-sands project near Fort McMurray to a processing plant near Edmonton, the Calgary-based partnership said in a statement today. Inter Pipeline also will assume C$485 million of Corridor debt and, upon closing, an additional C$300 million borrowed to complete a $1.8 billion expansion scheduled for service in 2010.

Inter Pipeline already operates and holds an 85 percent stake in the Cold Lake pipeline, which transports 330,000 barrels of blended bitumen a day in east-central Alberta. After the Corridor acquisition, the partnership said its lines will carry about half of the production of bitumen from Alberta’s tar-like oil sands.

The expansion will increase the capacity of the Corridor pipeline system by 66 percent to 465,000 barrels a day. The Athabasca project, led by Shell Canada Ltd with a 60 percent stake, plans to increase production by 100,000 barrels from the current 155,0000 barrels a day by 2010 with a “long-term” goal of 770,000 barrels. Chevron Corp. and Western Oil Sands Inc. each have a 20 percent stake in Athabasca.

Shares of Kinder Morgan rose 25 cents to $105.95 at 10:18 a.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. Inter Pipeline’s units fell 4 cents to C$9.01 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

Asset Sales

Houston-based Kinder Morgan has been selling assets to shed debt ahead of its $15 billion acquisition by an investor group led by founder Richard Kinder, American International Group Inc., Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Carlyle Group and Riverstone Holdings LLC.

Kinder Morgan acquired the Corridor pipeline line through its purchase of Terasen Inc. in December 2005. The company last month agreed to sell Terasen’s utility business to Fortis Inc. for C$3.7 billion.

(Inter Pipeline will hold a conference call at 1 p.m. New York time, accessible on the partnership’s Web site at http://www.interpipelinefund.com )

To contact the reporter on this story: Jim Polson in New York at [email protected] .

Last Updated: March 5, 2007 10:25 EST

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