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TC Energy refuses to raise bid for TC PipeLines despite unitholder criticism – CTV Toronto

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CALGARY —
TC Energy Corp. says it has no intention of again sweetening its bid to buy out the other unitholders of TC PipeLines LP, a U.S. master limited partnership it operates, despite the vow of its largest non-affiliated investor to vote against the transaction.

On Friday, Connecticut-based Energy Income Partners said it believes the offer of 0.7 common shares of TC Energy for each unit of TC PipeLines is inadequate and “significantly undervalues” its assets and growth potential.

The dissident unitholder says it owns more than 10 per cent of the partnership and has maintained a position in the company for nearly 15 years. TC Energy owns about 24 per cent of the units.

In its response, TC Energy says the exchange ratio represents a 20.8 per cent premium to the partnership’s closing price before the original offer as of Oct. 2.

The board of directors of the partnership’s general partner agreed to support the deal in December after TC Energy raised the ratio to 0.7 of a TC Energy share from the original 0.65 of a share, thus valuing TC PipeLines at US$1.68 billion.

A special meeting of unitholders to vote on the merger is set for Friday.

“We affirm the exchange ratio and we are confident that the meaningful transaction premium presents the best opportunity for (TC PipeLine’s) unitholders to maximize value,” said TC Energy CEO Francois Poirier in a statement Monday.

“TC Energy will not increase the exchange ratio or vary any of the terms of the merger. If the merger is not completed, the partnership will remain a publicly traded limited partnership.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 22, 2021.

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Germany’s confirmed coronavirus cases rise by 12,656

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Germany

BERLIN (Reuters) – The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany increased by 12,656 to 3,520,329, data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases showed on Sunday.

The reported death toll rose by 127 to 84,775, the tally showed.

 

(Reporting by Berlin Newsroom; Editing by Himani Sarkar)

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Canada ready to discuss COVID-19 vaccine IP waiver, ‘not interfering or blocking’ -Trudeau

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By David Ljunggren and Steve Scherer

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canada is ready to discuss an intellectual property rights (IP) waiver for COVID-19 vaccines and will not block one even though it stresses the importance of protecting patents, officials said on Friday.

U.S. President Joe Biden on Wednesday threw his support behind waiving IP rights for COVID-19 vaccines. Any such waiver would have to be negotiated through the World Trade Organization (WTO).

“We’ve been working with partners at the WTO to find a consensus-based solution and are ready to discuss proposals, in particular for COVID-19 vaccines,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told reporters.

Biden’s proposal angered pharmaceutical companies. Firms working on vaccines have reported sharp revenue and profit gains during the crisis.

Canadian International Trade Minister Mary Ng earlier said that Ottawa firmly believed in the importance of protecting IP.

“I can assure you Canada is not interfering or blocking. Canada is very much working to find a solution,” said Trudeau, who did not give details of the Canadian negotiating stance.

Ng said Ottawa recognized how much the pharmaceutical industry had done to innovate COVID-19 vaccines, adding that many barriers to access were unrelated to IP, such as supply-chain constraints.

Canada is trying to quell a third wave of the coronavirus pandemic that is pushing some healthcare systems to breaking points, particularly in the western provinces of Alberta and Manitoba.

Manitoba officials said they were postponing some non-urgent surgeries to open space for COVID-19 patients and planned to announce tougher public health restrictions as daily cases soared to a near-record high.

The U.S. state of Montana will offer vaccines to around 2,000 Alberta truckers who regularly cross the border, Alberta Premier Jason Kenney said.

Truckers will get vaccinated at a post being set up just south of the border, using Montana’s surplus Johnson & Johnson vaccines.

The scheme mirrors an agreement that Saskatchewan and Manitoba reached with North Dakota.

 

(Additional reporting by Nia Williams in Calgary and Rod Nickel in Winnipeg; Editing by David Goodman/Mark Heinrich, Grant McCool and Marguerita Choy)

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Moderna says waiving IP rights won’t help increase vaccine supply

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Moderna Inc said on Thursday that waiving intellectual property rights on COVID-19 vaccines will not help boost supply in 2021 or 2022, a day after U.S. President Joe Biden backed a proposed waiver that is aimed at giving poorer companies access.

 

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