Canada: Quebec's Ministry of Economy and Innovation has confirmed that it has received a request from the shareholders of McInnis Cement to swap the debt the province holds in the venture for equity. A request has been made to the ministry and to Investissement Québec, the provincial government's investment arm, to convert almost US$200m of debt into shares in the cement producer, according to the Globe and Mail newspaper. The newspaper speculates that an arrangement of this kind could be part of a potential deal with creditors to reduce the company’s liabilities and enable it to continue to operate.
McInnis Cement’s plant at Port-Daniel–Gascons was inaugurated in mid-2017. Construction at the site started in mid-2014. However, cost overruns saw the government-backed project delayed and then taken over by an investor, the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), a pension and insurance fund manager. The CDPQ was reportedly considering options including selling the plant or securing more investment in early 2018. Three bids were made for the cement producer but were rejected as being too low, according to reporting by the Globe and Mail. Interested parties in the company included Germany’s HeidelbergCement.