(Changes day to Tuesday from Thursday in first paragraph. In
U.S. dollars unless noted.)
CALGARY, Alberta Nov 19 TransCanada Corp
raised its preliminary cost estimate for the
controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline on Tuesday, saying it now
expects the project to cost at least $5.4 billion, $100 million
more than its prior forecast.
The company said it still expects the 830,000 barrel per day
line to be in service within two years of receiving final U.S.
approvals for the project.
It warned the new cost estimate, coming two weeks after it
last pegged the line's cost at $5.3 billion, will likely climb
again once it knows when it can proceed.
"That number will rise and we'll firm that up as we get
clarity on exact timing," Don Marchand, TransCanada's chief
financial officer, said at the company's annual investor day in
TransCanada has waited more than five years for the Obama
administration to make a final decision on the controversial
project, which will take oil from the Alberta oil sands and
North Dakota's Bakken field as far as the Cushing, Oklahoma,
The southern leg of the project, running from Cushing to
refineries on Texas' gulf coast, is nearly complete and expected
to begin delivering oil by year-end.
Keystone XL, opposed by a host of environmental groups, is
awaiting a final review from the U.S. State Department, with a
decision expected next year.
TransCanada shares were down 53 Canadian cents to C$46.77 by
midafternoon on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
(Reporting by Scott Haggett; Editing by John Wallace)