Canada extends review of Petronas $5.12 bn bid for Progress Energy

The Canadian government has extended its review of Malaysian state oil company Petronas $5.12-billion takeover bid for Progress Energy Resources Corp by two weeks as the country is yet to decide on how to deal with the recent surge of acquisitions of Canadian resource companies by overseas firms.

Progress Energy yesterday said that the government and Petronas have agreed to extend the review under the Investment Canada Act to 19 October as the government needs more time to assess whether the deal will be a net benefit to the country.

The approval under the Investment Canada Act is the only remaining regulatory nod required in what would be Malaysia's largest investment in Canada.

The extended review comes as Canada is currently vetting China's state-owned oil company Cnooc's $15.1-billion offer for Nexen Inc.

The deal that has already been criticised by not only  Canada's main opposition party but also from some of Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper's own government.

In June, Petronas offered to buy Canadian natural gas producer Progress Energy for $5.4 billion including debt, raising its bid by 8 per cent to $5.12 billion  a month later to trump a rival offer from a unnamed multi-national oil company. (See: Malaysia's Petronas sweetens bid for Canada's Progress Energy to $5.12 bn)