Alta. MP changes view on Nexen sale to CNOOC

A Tory Member of Parliament from Alberta says he has changed his opinion about the sale of Nexen Inc. to Chinese owned CNOOC.

LaVar Payne wrote letter to Prime Minister raising concerns about the deal

A Tory MP from Medicine Hat says he has changed his view on Nexen's sale to CNOOC. (Claro Cortes/Reuters)

The Conservative Member of Parliament for Medicine Hat, Alta. says he has changed his view on the sale of Calgary-based Nexen Inc. to Chinese state-owned CNOOC.

LaVar Payne was one of three MPs who wrote a letter to Prime Minister Stephen Harper raising concerns about the deal, describing it as setting a "very dangerous precedent" and referring to China's human rights record as "far from stellar."

"It's my job as the Member of Parliament for Medicine Hat to voice the concerns of my constituents and that's exactly what I'm doing," Payne told CBC on Wednesday.

Payne says he has been reassured the environmental regulations of Canada will be followed and this is the last major purchase by a state-owned foreign company in the energy sector.

"This is not going to be an ongoing issue in terms of state purchases particularly of resources."

Payne adds he has spoken to his constituents and is confident their concerns have been addressed. 

The sale is still awaiting approval in the U.S.