MEG Energy, an oil shipper on Canada’s Trans Mountain Expansion (TMX) project, said on Monday the pipeline is expected to start filling with oil in late 2023 and be fully operational early next year.
The Canadian government-owned Trans Mountain pipeline, which transports crude from Alberta’s oil sands to the Pacific Coast, will boost capacity to 890,000 barrels per day (bpd) from 300,000 bpd currently once the expansion is complete.
The C$21.4 billion ($16.00 billion) project is over-budget and behind schedule, but its completion will be a major boost for Canadian oil producers by opening up a significant export route to markets in Asia.
Oil sands producer MEG has secured 20,000 bpd on the pipeline.
“We’re being told linefill potentially at the end of 2023 and fully operational in the first quarter,” MEG Energy CEO Derek Evans told Reuters in an interview.
So far Trans Mountain has only said it expects the expansion to be mechanically completed in the third quarter of 2023.