VANCOUVER, March 20, 2012 /CNW/ - Westshore Terminals Investment Corporation (TSX: WTE.UN) (the "Corporation") and Westshore Terminals Holdings Ltd. ("Holdings") announced today that a payment of $22,367,817 (representing $0.301 per unit) will be paid on or before April 13, 2012 to unitholders of record on March 31, 2012 as compared to a distribution of $20,140,315 (representing $0.271 per unit) for the first quarter of 2011.
Of the total Q1 2012 distributions, $0.17 per unit is in the form of a dividend on the shares of the Corporation, and the remaining $0.13125 per unit is interest on the $5.00 Notes issued by Holdings bearing interest at 10.5% per annum.
For the twelve months ended December 31, 2011, Westshore loaded 27.3 million tonnes as compared to 24.7 million tonnes for the same period in 2010. Based on information currently available, Westshore anticipates volumes in 2012 will be approximately the same as in 2011 notwithstanding the anticipated operational interruptions at the terminal described below. For the two month period ending February 29, 2012, Westshore shipped 4.3 million tonnes and anticipates 6.3 million tonnes to be shipped for Q1 2012 compared to 5.9 million tonnes in Q1 2011.
Anticipated interruptions at the terminal are planned during the last two weeks of March 2012 (when three major replacements transfer chutes will be installed) and for approximately five weeks commencing at the end of September 2012 (when a new double rotary railcar dumper will be installed replacing the old single dumper), all as part of previously announced maintenance and capital expansion projects. Westshore nevertheless anticipates throughput volumes to be at similar levels to 2011, but at higher overall rates. Following completion of these projects which are expected by the end of 2012, it is anticipated that the rated capacity of the terminal will be approximately 33 million tonnes per year, based on certain regular operating assumptions.
As reported in the Q2 and Q3 2011 reports, on July 20, 2011 the Federal Department of Finance issued a news release and "backgrounder" announcing proposed amendments to the provisions in the Income Tax Act concerning the income tax treatment of distributions on "stapled units". The effect of the proposed amendments would be to deny the deductibility of interest on Holdings' $371 million principal amount of 10.5% notes. A subcommittee of the board of directors was formed to explore options for changes, if any, to the capital structure of the Corporation and Holdings.
As a result of this process, the board of directors of the Corporation have approved a capital restructuring that will involve an exchange of the Note Receipt component of the current trading units for additional common shares of the Corporation, which will then be consolidated. The result will be that instead of the currently outstanding 74,250,016 units, the Corporation will have outstanding 74,250,016 common shares without any debt component held by the public securityholders. These proposed changes will be set out more fully in the Corporation's Information Circular to be released in May 2012 and will be subject to approval by securityholders at the June 2012 Annual and Special Meeting.
The foregoing statements concerning expected throughput volumes are forward-looking statements that reflect the current expectations of the Corporation with respect to future events and performance. Forward-looking statements should not be read as guarantees of future performance or results, and will not necessarily be accurate indications of whether such performance or results will be achieved.
Forward-looking statements are based on information available at the time they are made, assumptions made by management, and management's good faith belief with respect to future events, and will be impacted by and are subject to the risks and uncertainties outlined in the Corporation's Annual Information Form that could cause actual performance or results to differ materially from those reflected in the forward-looking statements, historical results or current expectations.