MONTREAL Feb 24 The chief executive of Canada's
second largest pension fund, which owns a 30 percent stake in
Bombardier Inc.'s transportation division, said on
Friday he hopes that a dispute between the company and Toronto's
transportation agency over a rail car contract will be resolved
out of court.
Bombardier and Metrolinx, the provincial agency in charge of
transportation in and around Toronto, have repeatedly clashed
over lengthy delivery delays on a contract for light rail cars.
Michael Sabia, chief executive of the Caisse de depot et
placement du Quebec, acknowledged that the plane and train maker
needed to make improvements in delivering the rail cars, but
said Bombardier was "making progress."
Sabia said he did not think that the conflict with
Metrolinx would have a long-term impact on Bombardier.
"I think it's a difficult circumstance right now," he told
reporters in Montreal. "But one of the good things about black
eyes is that they heal."
Bombardier shares were down more than 4 percent in afternoon
Bombardier is seeking a court injunction at a hearing on
March 21 in response to "unjustified threats to terminate" the
contract for 182 cars, the company said in a Feb. 10 statement.
Metrolinx previously filed a notice saying it wanted to
terminate the contract.
"We're very hopeful that (the) situation is resolved
amicably through negotiations and not through a long period of
legal action," Sabia said.
Olivier Marcil, a spokesman for Bombardier, said by email
that the hearing should "bring Metrolinx to resume good-faith
discussions." Marcil said Bombardier is achieving its project
milestones in Ontario, after on Friday making its first delivery
to the Waterloo transportation agency, for a separate light rail
Bombardier in 2010 won a roughly C$770 million ($574.84
million) contract to deliver 182 vehicles between 2013 and 2020.
The light-rail vehicles are to be used in a new transit project
crossing Toronto due to open in 2021, after Metrolinx pushed
back its planned launch by a year.
(Reporting by Allison Lampert in Montreal; Editing by Leslie