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CN purchasing 1,000 new high-capacity hopper cars to boost grain shipments

(Source: Canadian National Railway press release, May 7, 2021)

MONTREAL — As it moves ahead towards its vision of becoming the first truly North American railway, CN (TSX: CNR) (NYSE: CNI) today announced it has placed an order for 1,000 new generation, high-capacity grain hopper cars. These innovative new railcars, to be built in a TrinityRail manufacturing plant in Mexico, will help meet the growing needs of North American grain farmers and demands of grain customers.

CN leads the industry in moving grain, and the TrinityRail order is part of a larger program to build and renew a fleet of 6,000 hopper railcars over the next three years. CN recently made a formal offer to acquire Kansas City Southern, a fellow Class I railway. The combination would extend the span of CN’s network from Canada and the U.S. into Mexico, making it the first railroad to link North America’s three national economies.

“These cars will be manufactured in Mexico and will help move more grain across the CN rail network, which continues to make CN the embodiment of a true USMCA railroad. Being an engine of North American economic growth and prosperity means that CN focuses continually on making strategic investments. Adding these 1,000 new generation hopper cars to our fleet is a prime example of that. In addition to our superior proposal to combine with KCS, this is a step further in our vision of seamlessly connecting ports and rails in the United States, Mexico and Canada and of providing superior service, enhanced competition and new market access to move goods across North America efficiently and safely. — JJ Ruest, President and Chief Executive Officer, CN

“CN’s grain movement has been resilient during the pandemic, achieving 14 straight months of record Canadian grain volume shipments. The dedication of our railroaders as well as our agri-food and supply chain partners has been key to this exceptional performance. By purchasing additional hopper cars, we are strengthening our commitment to grain farmers, grain customers, and the overall supply chain to support and expand our movement of grain to international markets as demand continues to increase.” — Rob Reilly, Executive Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer, CN

“The purchase of 1,000 new high-capacity hopper cars by CN is good news for Canadian grain farmers, grain customers, and the Canadian economy. A safe and reliable freight rail system is a critical part of a healthy Canadian economy that supports good middle class jobs.” — Honourable Omar Alghabra, Minister of Transport, Government of Canada.

“As grain farmers know well, we need a reliable transportation system to get our high-quality products to market in a timely manner. Today’s great announcement by CN of 1,000 new high-capacity hopper cars builds on their success of month-over-month records for grain movement amid record high grain prices. The Transportation Modernization Act our Government passed in 2017 also helped incentivize these kinds of investments. All of it points clearly to an even brighter future on the horizon for Canadian grain farmers and the entire grain value-chain.” — Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Government of Canada

“The employees of Trinity de Mexico are honored to receive this valuable order from Canadian National. Trinity is a pioneer in the manufacturing of railcars in Mexico which has greatly contributed to the development of the Sabinas region, the state of Coahuila, the entire country of Mexico, and the North American freight railcar market.” — Pardo, Executive Vice President, Trinity de Mexico

“On behalf of Canada’s grain farmers, we are encouraged by any investment that helps get our grain to markets across the world. As our production increases, we see this as a positive sign that our rail capacity is poised to keep up with growing demand here and abroad.” — Andre Harpe, Chairman, Grain Growers of Canada

CN's continued ability to deliver record volumes of grain shipments is largely due to investments made by the company over the past few years to improve safety and network fluidity. The purchase of these lighter, shorter, high capacity rail cars will enable CN to move more grain, with less equipment, supporting the company’s focus on better serving customers by providing safe, efficient, low carbon freight transportation services. CN is the most fuel-efficient railway in North America, using 15% less fuel per gross ton mile than the industry average. In 2020, CN’s actions to reduce emissions, mitigate climate risks and to develop the low-carbon economy resulted in CN being one of only three Canadian companies listed on CDP’s prestigious Climate A List. The partnership with TrinityRail will continue to help CN maintain its commitment to a cleaner connected continent.

Friday, May 7, 2021

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