VANCOUVER, May 16 /CNW/ - TimberWest Forest Corp. (TSX: TWF.UN)
("TimberWest" or the "Company") today commented on matters raised by
the Hul'qumi'num Treaty Group regarding the proposed purchase of
TimberWest's stapled units by two leading Canadian pension funds. The
proposed purchase was disclosed on April 11, 2011.
The company confirmed it is aware of the existence of various First
Nations claims against the Canadian and British Columbia Governments
for aboriginal rights and title relating to lands on Vancouver Island.
TimberWest also confirmed that, as part of its sales process, it has
made potential buyers aware that treaty processes and consultations are
ongoing with the Canadian and British Columbia Governments regarding
traditional territories, which overlap with fee simple private lands
owned by TimberWest.
While it is not a party to these claims and treaty processes, TimberWest
said they have been fully disclosed by TimberWest to the two Canadian
pension funds as well as other potential buyers. TimberWest added that
it has fulfilled, and will continue to fulfill, all legal obligations
required to effect the transfer of ownership of its stapled units.
TimberWest believes the potential purchase of its stapled units will
have no impact on the remedies that may be available to the
Hul'qumi'num Treaty Group with regard to its claims.
Regarding forestry practices, TimberWest's managed forest lands are
regulated under the Private Managed Forest Land Act and regulations and
other provincial and federal legislation including the Fisheries Act,
Environmental Management Act and Drinking Water Protection Act.
TimberWest said it manages its assets for long-term sustainability to
assure a steady and continuing flow of high quality timber and
cooperation with its neighboring communities. Protection of
biodiversity is a key element of sustainable forest management and
TimberWest continually strives to improve efforts to sustain key
habitat for plants and wildlife. This commitment is not only part of
delivering on its social and environmental license to operate, it meets
the increasing market demand for products from timberlands that have
been independently certified as having high standards of environmental
management. Since the year 2000, TimberWest has maintained third-party
certification of its environmental management system under ISO 14001
and has maintained the sustainability of its harvesting practices on
private lands under the Sustainable Forestry Initiative Standard.
TimberWest said it values its relationships with its First Nations
neighbours, respects the right of the Hul'qumi'num Treaty Group to
pursue its claims, and hopes that the Hul'qumi'num Treaty Group and the
Canadian and British Columbia Governments soon reach a conclusion in
their negotiations on these matters.
TimberWest is uniquely positioned as western Canada's largest private
timber and land management company. The Company owns in fee simple
approximately 327,000 hectares or 808,000 acres of private land and is
in the business of selling timber products and real estate.
Stapled Units of TimberWest Forest Corp. are traded on the Toronto Stock
Exchange under the symbol "TWF.UN"
Forward-looking Statements Disclaimer
Statements in this news release that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements that
involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements in this
news release include, but are not limited to, statements about: the
proposed acquisition of TimberWest by bcIMC and PSP Investments and
TimberWest's right to solicit superior proposals during a 60-day
"go-shop" period. TimberWest's actual results could differ materially
from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements.
Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include, but
are not limited to general economic conditions, variations in
TimberWest's product prices and changes in commodity prices generally, changes in market
conditions, variations in harvest levels, changes in log transportation
costs, actions of competitors, interest rate and foreign currency
fluctuations, regulatory, harvesting fee and trade policy changes and
other actions by governmental authorities including real estate zoning
approvals, the ability to implement business strategies and pursue
business opportunities, labour relations, weather conditions, forest
fires, insect infestation, disease and other natural phenomena and
other risks and uncertainties described in TimberWest's public filings
with securities regulatory authorities. In addition, the completion of
the proposed acquisition, or of any superior proposal, is or would be
conditional upon a number of factors, many of which are outside of
TimberWest's control. There is no assurance that the proposed
acquisition will be completed at all or upon the terms and conditions
described above. Similarly, there is no assurance that TimberWest will
be successful in soliciting a superior proposal during its go-shop
process, or that any unsolicited superior proposal will be made
following the completion of the go-shop process, or that, if made, any
superior proposal will be completed at all or upon its terms and
SOURCE TimberWest Forest Corp.
For further information:
Vice President Finance and Chief Financial Officer