Port Alice pulp mill creditors unlikely to get paid, trustee says

The bankrupt mill owner owes at least $272 million

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC), acting trustee for the closed Port Alice pulp mill Neucel Specialty Cellulose, says unsecured creditors should not expect to be paid.

Neucel was forced into bankruptcy this April after all but disappearing from Port Alice, leaving hazardous chemicals, millions in debt and hundreds of unemployed workers behind. Neucel vacated the mill in February 2019, and soon after the province had to step in to address hazardous waste which was at risk of leeching into the inlet.

The province submitted four bills for the clean-up to Neucel, which did not respond. Based on that, the court approved a bankrupcty order, assigning PWC as the bankruptcy trustee and receiver.

In a May 19 report, PWC outlined priority creditors, starting with the province which is owed $13.5 million, plus accruing interest. Second in line is Neucel’s parent company Fulida Holdings Canada, a member of Chinese-based Fulida Group, which claims $235 million.

The last secured creditor is Unifor Local 514, which is trying to collect $21 million in unpaid wages to former employees of the mill.

PWC wrote in its report that “there is no prospect of any recovery to the unsecured creditors.” This includes the municipality of Port Alice which entered a claim for $1.8 million in oustanding taxes.

For now, the massive, derelict mill site sits silent, guarded 24/7, paid for by the province.

READ MORE: Dormant Northern Vancouver Island pulp mill declares bankruptcy, owes $272 million

READ MORE: Neucel Specialty Cellulose lays off remaining workers, no written notice given

Do you have something to add to this story or something else we should report on? Email:
zoe.ducklow@blackpress.ca.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Bankruptcies

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

From left to right: Don Smith 1st Vice President, Mayor Aaron Stone, Legion President Darlene Paulson, And Sgt at Arms Greg Paulson. (Submitted photo)
Legion announces changes to Poppy Campaign and Remembrance Day service

There will be no public Remembrance Day service this year

Mary Fox’s new book My Life as a Potter is available at bookstores nationwide. (Cole Schisler photo)
Mary Fox book: My Life as a Potter raises funds for Mary Fox Legacy Project

My Life as a Potter is available now at bookstores nationwide

BC Liberal candidate Duck Paterson on the campaign trail. (Submitted photo)
BC Liberal candidate Duck Paterson clarifies position on climate change

Paterson calls human activity a ‘contributing’ factor and says climate change must be addressed

Property on the Trans Canada Highway beside the Country Maples Campground has been sold and will become a modular home park. (Photo submitted)
Development, business transactions significant for Chemainus

Two highway properties and Owl’s Nest Bakery and Bistro sold

Chris Istace campaigning in Crofton. (Photo submitted)
Green Party’s Istace apologizes for remark about First Nations gaming grants being a ‘handout’

Candidate determined to do better in thinking and communicating matters of reconciliation

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

Conservation officers hope the public can provide information about who shot and left a bull and cow Roosevelt elk near Spruston Road, south of Nanaimo. (Photo: Facebook)
Pair of Roosevelt elk shot and left in woods south of Nanaimo

Conservation officers hope public can help find who killed the animals near Spruston Road

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Chastity Davis-Alphonse took the time to vote on Oct. 21. B.C’s general Election Day is Saturday, Oct. 24. (Chastity Davis-Alphonse Facebook photo)
B.C. reconciliation advocate encourages Indigenous women to vote in provincial election

Through the power of voice and education Chastity Davis-Alphonse is hopeful for change

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

White Rock RCMP Staff Sgt. Kale Pauls has released a report on mental health and policing in the city. (File photos)
White Rock’s top cop wants to bill local health authority for lengthy mental-health calls

‘Suggestion’ included in nine-page review calling for ‘robust’ support for healthcare-led response

A Le Chateau retail store is shown in Montreal on Wednesday July 13, 2016. Le Chateau Inc. says it is seeking court protection from creditors under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act to allow it to liquidate its assets and wind down its operations.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Clothing retailer Le Chateau plans to close its doors, files for CCAA protection

Le Chateau said it intends to remain fully operational as it liquidates its 123 stores

Green party Leader Sonia Furstenau arrives to announce her party’s election platform in New Westminster, B.C., on October 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. Green party says it’s raised nearly $835,000 in 38 days

NDP Leader John Horgan is holding his final virtual campaign event

Most Read