CERIOCO, established in 1993, describes itself as a wholly state-owned company with independent legal status.
The Transpod project, first announced in August 2020, is proposed as a fully electric, 1000km/hour rail line between Edmonton and Calgary. There has not yet been a promise for financial support for the project from the Alberta government.
According to Transpod's press release relating to the securing of half a billion dollars in financing for the project:
Broughton Capital Group (“BCG”), in cooperation with China-East Resources Import & Export Co. (“CERIECO”), have agreed in principle to provide a combined US$550M finance and Master EPC arrangement respectively to accelerate the development of a TransPod Line between Edmonton and Calgary and drive economic growth in the region. An already-released feasibility study on the TransPod Line confirmed that this ultra-high-speed transportation project will create up to 140,000 jobs and add $19.2B to the region’s GDP throughout construction, and the Master EPC arrangement is expected to involve a significant contribution from Canadian contractors.
Transpod promises to cut the three hour commute between Edmonton and Calgary to just 45 minutes.
Allowing a financial partnership with the Chinese government on a critical infrastructure project is in contrast to much of Premier Jason Kenney's previous rhetoric about the Communist-run nation.
Kenney has previously lambasted the Chinese government, drawing an angry response from the Chinese consulate in Calgary for his remarks about the Chinese Communist Party's role in the coronavirus pandemic.
“I think the Chinese government played a significant role in the devastating public health and economic damage that is being experienced by the entire world,” the Alberta premier said at a 2020 virtual roundtable hosted by the Washington-based Canadian American Business Council. “And I do not think we should just forget this and walk past it. There must be some kind of a reckoning, there must be some accountability.”
The consulate issued a Twitter response to Kenney.
“A final friendly reminder for the Premier: You are based in Edmonton, not Ottawa,” the statement reads. “And your China-blaming comment might not please Mr. Trump since he will not spare a glance.”