June 14, 2017 / 3:43 AM / 2 years ago

Canada's Lexin to cooperate with receivership; adjourns suit against regulator

(Reuters) - Oil company Lexin Resources Ltd said it has agreed to cooperate with the receivership process to better enable the sale of its licensed assets and has adjourned its countersuit against the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER).

Lexin adjourned its C$200 million ($151.31 million)countersuit against the regulator, which it filed after the AER forced it into receivership. 

In March, a Canadian court placed the privately held company in receivership to sell off its assets after an unprecedented application by the AER.

The receivership and suspension came after the AER said Lexin failed to comply with multiple orders, lacked enough staff to manage its more than 1,600 sites and owed more than C$70 million ($52.93 million).

The company's director, Michael Smith, has agreed to pay C$175,000 for Lexin's noncompliances, ending the AER's investigation, Lexin said on Tuesday. bit.ly/2rZ1LCE

Receivership means the 1,380 oil wells belonging to Lexin could join the more than 1,500 others in Alberta that do not have legal owners.

The AER had suspended licences on all oil and gas well facilities and pipelines belonging to Lexin in February, nearly doubling the number of orphaned wells in Canada’s main crude-producing province.

Lexin’s sites will continue to remain shut and custody for it will be provided by the AER, the Orphan Well Association and companies with an interest in the sites until the sales process is finished.

($1 = 1.3218 Canadian dollars)

Reporting by Abinaya Vijayaraghavan in Bengaluru and Ethan Lou in Calgary, Alberta; Editing by Sunil Nair

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