Kinder Morgan secures commitments for Trans Mountain after dip

The entrance for the Kinder Morgan Tank Farm is pictured in Burnaby, British Columbia, October 6, 2014. REUTERS/Ben Nelms

(Reuters) - Kinder Morgan Inc said it had booked all of the 22,000 barrels per day of capacity it had offered to the oil industry earlier this month on its Canadian Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project, following a dip in shipper commitments.

The current Trans Mountain pipeline between the oil-producing province of Alberta and the west coast is routinely oversubscribed, and the expansion has had strong support from Canadian oil sands shippers.

Kinder Morgan said two weeks ago that commitment for the pipeline project had dipped 3 percent, or 22,000 barrels per day, after the U.S. pipeline company hiked tolls.

On March 9, the company offered that capacity through a so-called “open season”, during which potential customers can sign up for a part of a pipeline’s capacity rights.

Canada’s government in November approved Kinder Morgan’s plan to nearly triple the crude pipeline to 890,000 barrels per day.

All available long-term capacity on the pipeline has now been contracted to 13 customers, the company said in a statement on Wednesday.

About 80 percent of the capacity on the expanded pipeline has 15- and 20-year commitments, with the remaining 20 percent reserved for spot volumes as required by regulators, Kinder Morgan said.

The biggest U.S. pipeline company said next steps include arranging financing for the project, which is expected to start operating in late 2019.

Reporting by John Benny in Bengaluru; Editing by Sai Sachin Ravikumar