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NSFDF NXT Energy Solutions

Filed: 3 May 21, 9:03am
 
 

 
UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C.  20549
 
 
 
FORM 20-F
 
 (Mark One)
 
[ ]     
Registration Statement Pursuant To Section 12(b) or (g) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
 
OR
 
[ X ] 
Annual Report Pursuant To Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020.

OR
 
[ ] 
Transition Report Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 For the transition period from __ to __
 
OR
 
[ ]          
Shell Company Report Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 Date of event requiring this shell company report:

 
 
Commission file number 000-24027
 
NXT Energy Solutions Inc.
(Exact Name of Registrant as Specified in its Charter)
 
Alberta, Canada
(Jurisdiction of incorporation or organization)
 
Suite 302, 3320 - 17th Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T3E 0B4
(Address of principal executive offices)
 
Eugene Woychyshyn
Phone: 403-206-0805
Facsimile: 403-264-6442
Suite 302, 3320 - 17th Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T3E 0B4
(Name, Telephone, E-mail and/or Facsimile number and address of Company Contact Person)
 
 
Securities registered or to be registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act: None
 
 

 
 
 
Securities registered or to be registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:
 
Common Shares
(Title of Class)
 
Securities for which there is a reporting obligation pursuant to Section 15(d) of the Act: None
 
Indicate the number of outstanding shares of each of the issuer’s classes of capital or common stock as of the close of the period covered by the annual report:
 
64,437,790 common shares outstanding as of December 31, 2020 (64,514,921 common shares outstanding as of April 30, 2021)
 
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act.
 
Yes  
No X

 
If this report is an annual or transition report, indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
 
Yes  
No X

 
Note-Checking the box above will not relieve any registrant required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 from their obligations under those Sections.
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days.
 
Yes X  
No      
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files).
 
 
Yes X  
No      
 
 
 

 
 
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, or an emerging growth company. See definition of “accelerated filer”, “large accelerated filer”, and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act. (Check one):
 
Large accelerated filer      Accelerated filer       
       
Non-accelerated filerX Emerging growth Company
  
 
If an emerging growth company that prepares its financial statements in accordance with U.S. GAAP, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards† provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act. ___
 
† The term “new or revised financial accounting standard” refers to any update issued by the Financial Accounting Standards Board to its Accounting Standards Codification after April 5, 2012.
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has filed a report on and attestation to its management’s assessment of the effectiveness of its internal control over financial reporting under Section 404(b) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (15 U.S.C. 7262(b)) by the registered public accounting firm that prepared or issued its audit report. ___
 
 
Indicate by check mark which basis of accounting the registrant has used to prepare the financial statements included in this filing.
 
U.S. GAAP X

 International Financial Reporting Standards as issued by the International Accounting Standards Board      Other     
 
If “Other” has been checked in response to the previous question, indicate by check mark which financial statement item the registrant has elected to follow.
 
Item 17      Item 18     
 
If this is an annual report, indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act)
 
Yes      
No X

 
 

 
 

 
 
 
TABLE OF CONTENTS
 
 
PART I   
   
ITEM 1.IDENTITY OF DIRECTORS, SENIOR MANAGEMENT AND ADVISERS5
ITEM 2.OFFER STATISTICS AND EXPECTED TIMETABLE6
ITEM 3.KEY INFORMATION6
ITEM 4.INFORMATION ON THE COMPANY18
ITEM 4A.UNRESOLVED STAFF COMMENTS28
ITEM 5.OPERATING AND FINANCIAL REVIEW AND PROSPECTS28
ITEM 6.DIRECTORS, SENIOR MANAGEMENT AND EMPLOYEES39
ITEM 7.MAJOR SHAREHOLDERS AND RELATED PARTY TRANSACTIONS50
ITEM 8.FINANCIAL INFORMATION52
ITEM 9.THE OFFER AND LISTING53
ITEM 10.ADDITIONAL INFORMATION53
ITEM 11.QUANTITATIVE AND QUALITATIVE DISCLOSURES ABOUT MARKET RISK63
ITEM 12.DESCRIPTION OF SECURITIES OTHER THAN EQUITY SECURITIES63
   
PART II   
   
ITEM 13.DEFAULTS, DIVIDEND ARREARAGES AND DELINQUENCIES64
ITEM 14.MATERIAL MODIFICATIONS TO THE RIGHTS OF SECURITY HOLDERS AND USE OF PROCEEDS64
ITEM 15.CONTROLS AND PROCEDURES64
ITEM 16A.AUDIT COMMITTEE FINANCIAL EXPERT65
ITEM 16B.CODE OF ETHICS65
ITEM 16C.PRINCIPAL ACCOUNTANT FEES AND SERVICES66
ITEM 16D.EXEMPTIONS FROM THE LISTING STANDARDS FOR AUDIT COMMITTEES66
ITEM 16E.PURCHASES OF EQUITY SECURITIES BY THE ISSUER AND AFFILIATED PURCHASERS66
ITEM 16F.CHANGE IN REGISTRANT’S CERTIFYING ACCOUNTANT67
ITEM 16G.CORPORATE GOVERNANCE67
ITEM 16H.MINE SAFETY DISCLOSURE67
   
PART III   
   
ITEM 17.FINANCIAL STATEMENTS67
ITEM 18.FINANCIAL STATEMENTS67
ITEM 19.EXHIBITS [note: remember that this need to be hyperlinked]68
   
 

 

 
 
FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
 
Except for any historical information contained herein, the matters discussed in this Annual Report on Form 20-F contain certain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 with respect to our financial condition, results of operations and business. These statements relate to analyses and other information which are based on forecasts of future results and estimates of amounts not yet determinable. These statements also relate to our future prospects, developments and business strategies. These forward-looking statements are identified by their use of terms and phrases such as “anticipate”, “believe”, “could”, “estimate”, “expect”, “intend”, “may”, “plan”, “predict”, “will” and similar terms and phrases, including references to assumptions. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including current trend information, projections for deliveries and other trend projections, that may cause our actual future activities and results of operations to be materially different from those suggested or described in this Annual Report on Form 20-F.
 
These risks include:
 
novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV/COVID-19), and the potentially negative effects thereof on the Company's workforce, its supply chain or demand for its products our ability to generate sufficient ongoing cash flow from operations or to raise adequate capital to allow NXT to grow the business and continue operations;
the ability of management to execute its business plan;
health, safety and the environment (including risks related the novel coronavirus);
the emergence of alternative competitive technologies;
our ability to protect and maintain our intellectual property and rights to our SFD® technology;
our reliance on a limited number of key personnel;
our reliance on a limited number of aircraft;
our reliance on a limited number of clients;
counterparty credit risk;
foreign currency and interest rate fluctuations;
changes in, or in the interpretation of, laws, regulations or policies; and general business, economic and market conditions (including global commodity prices); and
other factors described herein under “Risk Factors” (see Item 3. D.).
 
If one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or if underlying assumptions prove incorrect, our actual results may vary materially from those expected, estimated or projected. Given these uncertainties, users of the information included in this Annual Report on Form 20-F, including investors and prospective investors, are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements. We do not intend to update the forward-looking statements included in this Annual Report on Form 20-F.
 
In this Annual Report on Form 20-F, except as specified otherwise or unless the context requires otherwise, “we”, “our”, “us”, the “Company”, and “NXT” refer to NXT Energy Solutions Inc. and its subsidiaries. All references to “fiscal” in connection with a year shall mean the year ended December 31.
 
All financial information contained herein is expressed in Canadian dollars (“Cdn$”) unless otherwise stated.
 
PART I
 
ITEM 1. 
IDENTITY OF DIRECTORS, SENIOR MANAGEMENT AND ADVISERS
 
This Form 20-F is being filed as an annual report under the United States Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, (the "U.S. Exchange Act") and, as such, there is no requirement to provide any information under this item.
 
 
 
5
 
 
ITEM 2. 
OFFER STATISTICS AND EXPECTED TIMETABLE
 
This Form 20-F is being filed as an annual report under the U.S. Exchange Act and, as such, there is no requirement to provide any information under this item.
 
ITEM 3. 
KEY INFORMATION
 
A.            
Selected financial data.
 
The following historical financial information should be read in conjunction with the section entitled “Operating and Financial Review” (see Item 5 herein) and our audited consolidated financial statements and related notes, which are included elsewhere in this document. The consolidated statements of income (loss) data for the years ended December 31, 2020, 2019, and 2018 and selected consolidated balance sheet data as of December 31, 2020 and 2019 are derived from and qualified by reference to, our audited consolidated financial statements that are included elsewhere in this Form 20-F. The consolidated statements of income (loss) data for the years ended December 31, 2017 and 2016 and the selected consolidated balance sheet data as of December 31, 2018, 2017 and 2016, are derived from our previously filed audited consolidated financial statements (which are not included in this Form 20-F).
 
Effective for the year ended December 31, 2020, the Company has presented stock based compensation expense of $168,416 within general and administrative expenses and has recorded an immaterial correction to classify the stock based compensation expense for the 2019, 2018, 2017 and 2016 comparative years of $43,809, $386,154, $581,356 and $790,500, respectively, to be presented within general and administrative expenses. While ASC 718 does not identify a specific line item in the income statement for presentation of the expense related to share based compensation arrangements, the SEC has released guidance under SAB Topic 14.F that the expense related to share-based payment arrangements should be presented in the same line or lines as cash compensation paid to the same employees.  The Company’s presentation conforms to this guidance.
 
During 2020 the Company determined that the full amount previously presented in accumulated other comprehensive income of $710,934 related to cumulative translation adjustment associated with foreign subsidiaries that were substantially liquidated prior to fiscal year 2016. Thus the Company has recorded an immaterial correction to reflect the release of the cumulative translation adjustment to earnings prior to the opening balance sheet by eliminating the accumulated other comprehensive income balance of $710,934 ($710,935 in 2016) and decreasing the deficit by the same amount.
 
INCOME (LOSS) & COMPREHENSIVE INCOME (LOSS)
 
(expressed in Canadian Dollars)
 
2020
 
 
2019
 
 
2018
 
 
2017
 
 
2016
 
Survey revenues
 $136,566 
 $11,976,149 
 $- 
 $- 
 $1,447,269 
Operating expenses
    
    
    
    
    
Survey costs
  1,091,587 
  2,611,086 
  1,103,946 
  1,289,429 
  1,157,185 
General and administrative
  3,341,010 
  3,541,594 
  4,385,243 
  5,542,317 
  6,435,959 
Amortization expense
  1,780,806 
  1,781,181 
  1,790,267 
  1,897,576 
  2,104,864 
 
  6,213,403 
  7,933,861 
  7,279,456 
  8,729,322 
  9,698,008 
Other expense (income)
    
    
    
    
    
Interest expense (income), net
  (11,535)
  (20,684)
  (62,004)
  4,485 
  (17,254)
Foreign exchange (gain) loss
  (76,029)
  233,231 
  (19,852)
  69,676 
  272,713 
Other expense (income)
  10,402 
  56,833 
  (43,428)
  91,370 
  218,853 
Gain on extinguishment of liability
  - 
  - 
  (185,661)
  - 
  - 
 
  (77,162)
  269,380 
  (310,945)
  165,531 
  474,312 
Income (loss) before income taxes
  (5,999,675)
  3,772,908 
  (6,968,511)
  (8,894,853)
  (8,725,051)
Income tax expense (recovery)
  - 
  - 
  - 
  75,545 
  374,511 
Net income (loss) and comprehensive income (loss) for the year
  (5,999,675)
  3,772,908 
  (6,968,511)
  (8,970,398)
  (9,099,562)
Net income (loss) per share - Basic
 $(0.09)
 $0.06 
 $(0.11)
 $( 0.16)
 $( 0.17)
Net income (loss) per share - Diluted
 $(0.09)
 $0.06 
 $(0.11)
 $( 0.16)
 $( 0.17)
Weighted average # of common shares outstanding
    
    
    
    
    
Basic
  64,409,170 
  68,156,059 
  65,455,325 
  54,523,113 
  53,562,155 
Diluted
  64,409,170 
  68,156,059 
  65,455,325 
  54,523,113 
  53,562,155 
 
    
    
    
    
    
# of common shares outstanding
  64,437,790 
  64,406,891 
  68,573,558 
  58,161,133 
  53,856,509 
 
6
 
 
Balance Sheet Data
(expressed in Canadian Dollars)
 
 
 
2020
 
 
2019
 
 
2018
 
 
2017
 
 
2016
 
Working capital (deficiency)
 $2,732,977 
 $7,129,182 
 $3,823,832 
 $(318,166)
 $1,703,510 
 
    
    
    
    
    
Current assets
  4,074,487 
  8,445,904 
  4,365,970 
  1,284,008 
  2,316,341 
Deposits
  526,561 
  535,554 
  560,341 
  518,765 
  - 
Property and equipment, net
 
  707,326 
  677,647 
  683,157 
  778,685 
  3,348,557 
Right of use assets
  2,415,430 
  3,063,769 
  - 
  - 
  - 
Intellectual property, net
  16,285,333 
  17,970,067 
  19,654,800 
  21,339,533 
  23,024,268 
Total assets
  24,009,137 
  30,692,941 
  25,264,268 
  23,920,991 
  28,689,166 
 
    
    
    
    
    
Current liabilities
  1,341,510 
  1,316,722 
  542,138 
  1,602,174 
  612,831 
Long-term liabilities
  1,919,018 
  2,691,217 
  510,661 
  741,408 
  264,775 
Total liabilities
  3,260,528 
  4,007,939 
  1,052,799 
  2,343,582 
  887,606 
 
    
    
    
    
    
Shareholders’ equity:
    
    
    
    
    
Common shares
  95,327,123 
  95,313,064 
  96,656,248 
  88,121,286 
  85,966,393 
Preferred shares
  - 
  - 
  - 
  - 
  - 
Contributed capital
  9,355,716 
  9,306,493 
  9,262,684 
  8,195,075 
  7,613,719 
Deficit
  (83,934,230)
  (77,934,555)
  (81,707,463)
  (74,738,952)
  (65,768,552)
Total equity
  20,748,609 
  26,685,002 
  24,211,469 
  21,577,409 
  27,811,560 
Total liabilities and equity
  24,009,137 
  30,692,941 
  25,264,268 
  23,920,991 
  28,689,166 
 
 
 
7
 
 
Throughout the history of the Company there have been no dividends declared.
 
B.            
Capitalization and indebtedness.
 
This Form 20-F is being filed as an annual report under the U.S. Exchange Act and, as such, there is no requirement to provide any information under this item.
 
C.            
Reasons for the offer and use of proceeds.
 
This Form 20-F is being filed as an annual report under the U.S. Exchange Act and, as such, there is no requirement to provide any information under this item.
 
D.            
Risk factors.
 
Investing in our common shares involves a high degree of risk. In addition to the other information included in this document, you should carefully consider the risks described below before purchasing our common shares. If any of the following risks actually occur, our business, financial condition and results of operations could materially suffer. As a result, the trading price of our common shares could decline and you might lose all or part of your investment.
 
Covid-19 (2019-nCoV/COVID-19) Pandemic
 
As of the date of this 20-F the Covid-19 pandemic continues to be a risk to the operations of the Company. The Company has made provisions so employees can work safely in the office, or if necessary from home, all travel requires Board of Directors (the “Board”) approval, followed all Alberta Health Services and Health Canada recommendations, and implemented hygiene and physical distancing policies. NXT continues to communicate with employees and customers via available communication methods such as tele-conferences and on-line video conferencing. Demand for our services and prospective revenues may become adversely impacted the longer the Covid-19 pandemic continues. The impact of the continuation of the Covid-19 pandemic may hamper our ability to deliver SFD® surveys contracts in the following ways. If restrictions on international travel continue, our aircraft and personal will not be able to perform surveys. An outbreak of the virus among our staff or our customers’ personnel could delay any survey in progress. Business development may be delayed when in-person meetings and technical presentations may be a superior delivery method to tele-conferences or on-line video conferencing.
 
The situation is dynamic and the ultimate duration and magnitude of the impact on the economy and the financial effect to the Company is not known at this time. Estimates and judgments made by management in the preparation of the consolidated financial statements are subject to a higher degree of measurement uncertainty during this volatile period.
 
The Company began receiving the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (the “CEWS”) beginning with the April 2020 period and the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (the “CERS”) beginning with the October 2020 period. For the 2020 period the Company has recognized $0.29 million in CEWS subsidy and $0.06 million in the CERS. Funds from the CEWS and the CERS are being used to ensure staffing levels are maintained to continue to progress SFD® project discussions and marketing.
 
Our ability to continue operating.
 
The consolidated financial statements for December 31, 2020 have been prepared on a going concern basis.  The going concern basis of presentation assumes that NXT will continue in operation for the foreseeable future and will be able to realize its assets and discharge its liabilities and commitments in the normal course of business. 
 
NXT is still in the early stages of realizing wide-spread commercialization of its SFD® technology. Its ability to generate cash flow from operations will depend on its ability to service its existing clients and develop new clients for its SFD® services. Management recognizes that the commercialization phase can last for several years, and that it can have significant economic dependence on a small number of clients, which can have a material effect on the Company's operating results and financial position.
 
 
 
8
 
 
The events described in the following paragraphs highlight that there is substantial doubt about NXT’s ability to continue as a going concern within one year after the date that this 20-F has been issued.
 
The Company’s current cash position is not expected to be sufficient to meet the Company’s obligations and planned operations for a year beyond the date that these financial statements have been issued.
 
The Company is taking further steps to reduce operating costs including payroll and other general and administrative costs, and is evaluating alternatives to reduce other costs. If required, further financing options that may or may not be available to the Company include issuance of new equity, debentures or bank credit facilities.  The need for any of these options will be dependent on the timing of securing new SFD® survey contracts and obtaining financing on terms that are acceptable to both the Company and the financier.
 
NXT continues to develop its pipeline of opportunities to secure new revenue contracts. However, the Company’s longer-term success remains dependent upon its ability to convert these opportunities into successful contracts, to continue to attract new client projects, ultimately to expand the revenue base to a level sufficient to exceed fixed operating costs and generate positive cash flow from operations.  The occurrence and timing of these events cannot be predicted with sufficient certainty. 
 
The consolidated financial statements do not reflect adjustments that would be necessary if the going concern basis was not appropriate.  If the going concern basis were not appropriate for the consolidated financial statements, then adjustments would be necessary in the carrying value of the assets and liabilities, the reported revenues and expenses and the balance sheet classifications used. These adjustments could be material.
 
If the Company were to default on its office lease, the current month rent plus the next three months become immediately due. If the Company were to default on the aircraft lease, the Company would be required to deliver the aircraft back to the Lessor.
 
The financial statements rely upon estimates and assumptions that could be incorrect.
 
The preparation of financial statements requires our management to make estimates and assumptions. These estimates and assumptions affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities including the disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities as well as revenues and expenses recorded in our financial statements. Estimates made relate primarily to the measurement of accrued liabilities, stock-based compensation expense, valuation of future income tax assets, estimates for asset retirement obligations, the useful lives of capital assets, and intellectual property.
 
The estimates and assumptions are reviewed periodically and are based upon the best information available to management; however, we cannot provide assurance that future events will not prove that these estimates and assumptions are inaccurate. Any revisions to our estimates and assumptions may have a material impact on our future reported net income or loss and assets and liabilities.
 
Volatility in oil and natural gas commodity prices may affect demand for our services.
 
NXT's customer base is in the oil and natural gas exploration industry, which is exposed to risks of volatility in oil and natural gas commodity prices. As such, demand for our services and prospective revenues may become adversely impacted by ongoing declines in oil and natural gas prices. The impact of price changes on our ability to enter into SFD® survey contracts cannot be readily determined. However, in general, if commodity prices decline significantly, our opportunity to obtain and execute SFD® survey contracts will also likely decline, at least in the short term.
 
Our financial position is affected by foreign currency fluctuations.
 
The Company is exposed to foreign exchange risk in relation to its holding of significant US$ balances in cash and cash equivalents, short-term investments, accounts receivable, note receivable, deposits, accounts payables and accrued liabilities and entering into United States dollar revenue contracts. To mitigate exposure to fluctuations in foreign exchange, the Company does not currently enter into hedging contracts, but uses strategies to reduce the volatility of United States Dollar assets including converting excess United States dollars to Canadian dollars. As at December 31, 2020, the Company held net U.S dollar assets totaling US$2,164,285. Accordingly, a hypothetical 10% change in the value of one United States dollar expressed in Canadian dollars as at December 31, 2020 would have had an approximately $276,000 effect on the unrealized foreign exchange gain or loss for the year.
 
 
 
9
 
 
Our net income or loss is impacted by interest rate fluctuations.
 
We periodically invest available cash in short term investments that generate interest income that will be affected by any change in interest rates. (See Item 11).
 
Availability of Aircraft.
 
In April 2017, NXT completed a sale and leaseback agreement of its aircraft with a Calgary based international aircraft services organization (the “Lessor”). The terms of the agreement resulted in NXT selling its 1997 Cessna Citation Ultra 560 jet aircraft that was purchased in 2015. NXT has leased the aircraft over an initial term of 60 months and retains all existing operating rights and obligations. NXT is required to make monthly payments to the Lessor of approximately US$39,500. NXT has the option to extend the term of the lease by an additional two years. Should NXT want to repurchase the aircraft at the end of the initial lease term, the purchase price is US$1,450,000. When the aircraft is not needed for use by NXT, we seek to earn charter hire revenues from the aircraft through a 3rd party, Air Partners.
 
Air Partners also has access to an alternate, similar model aircraft (certified for the use of our survey equipment) which could be charter hired for use by NXT if needed.
 
In the event that NXT’s aircraft is not available (due to damage, a need for extensive repairs, or other unforeseen events) to conduct survey projects, there is a risk that suitable alternative aircraft may not be available on a timely basis from other charter operators when needed. This inability to conduct survey operations could have a material adverse effect on the Company's business, financial condition and results of operations.
 
We are a small business with limited personnel and our inability to segregate duties between administrative staff is an internal control weakness.
 
Certain duties that are most appropriately segregated between different employees are, due to our current limited staff, assigned to one or two individuals depending on the task.
 
Standard internal control methodology involves the separation of incompatible functions by assigning these functions to separate individuals and in larger organizations to separate departments. We often cannot allocate these functions to separate individuals because our administrative staff is limited.
 
Although we have adopted alternative control methods designed to compensate for the reduced ability to separate incompatible functions, these alternative controls are not effective and there is more than a remote likelihood that our internal control over financial reporting will not prevent or detect material misstatements if they should exist in our financial statements. This lack of separation of duties exposes NXT to potential misappropriation of funds, embezzlement and other forms of fraud and could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations. (See also Item 15).
 
We may periodically engage in transactions with related parties.
 
We may periodically enter into related party transactions with our officers and directors. The most significant transaction was a “Technology Transfer Agreement” (the “TTA”) that was executed on December 31, 2006 between NXT and Mr. George Liszicasz, our CEO, President and Chairman wherein we issued 10,000,000 convertible preferred shares to him in exchange for the rights to the SFD® technology for use in hydrocarbon exploration. In 2013, a total of 2,000,000 of these preferred shares were converted (on a one-to-one basis) into common shares, and the remaining 8,000,000 preferred shares were converted in August 2015. On April, 18, 2021, the TTA was amended so that Mr. Liszicasz transferred to us all his rights and entitlements to the SFD® technology for the use in the field of geothermal resources (please refer to Section 4.B for further discussion on geothermal resources). In addition to the related party transactions discussed elsewhere herein (i.e. the Co-operation Agreement, the Notes Receivable and the Targeted Issuer Bid), one of the members of NXT's Board, Thomas Valentine, is a partner in the law firm Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP which provides legal advice to NXT.
 
 
 
10
 
 
For a full history of the TTA see also Item 4. part A, “Information on the Company - History and development of the Company”, and Item 4. part B. “Information on the Company - Business Overview – Technology Transfer Agreement”.
 
Although we manage this potential conflict of interest risk through maintenance of a strong independent Board, all related party transactions have the potential for conflicts of interest that may compromise the ability of Board members to exercise their fiduciary responsibility to NXT shareholders.
 
For the period December 1, 2017 to January 31, 2018, Mr. Selby acted as the Interim CFO of the Company.
 
A single major shareholder who is also a Board member and an officer of the Company retains the ability to influence or control the Company, and this influence or control may result in a conflict of interest.
 
Mr. George Liszicasz, our CEO, is our largest shareholder and as of April 30, 2021 owns approximately 23% of our outstanding common shares and therefore has a substantial influence in all shareholder matters.
 
Controls do exist to mitigate any potential risks associated with this conflict of interest. Mr. Liszicasz adheres to a code of conduct, which includes a fiduciary responsibility to the Company, its shareholders and this conduct is governed by the independent Board directors who collectively represent a majority of the Board. Furthermore, all material related party transactions are disclosed publicly.
 
However, should these conflict of interest controls not be effective, decisions could be made by the Company that may advantage Mr. Liszicasz and negatively impact other shareholders.
 
Our rights to SFD® technology may be challenged and we may need to defend our rights to the technology in the courts.
 
Our rights to ownership and use of SFD® technology depended on Mr. Liszicasz having the lawful right to sell to NXT the exclusive rights to exploit the SFD® technology for the exploration of hydrocarbons as agreed to in the TTA.
 
A risk exists that an unknown party may claim some legal entitlement to our intellectual property, our rights to commercialize this intellectual property or our right to create SFD® devices and processes. However, we believe that such a claim would be without merit.
 
The SFD® technology is an essential component of our business plan. If a third party challenged our lawful entitlement to this technology, the legal defense of our right to the technology may be expensive and could cause a loss of our right to the SFD® technology, or a protracted legal process to assert our right to the technology would have a material adverse effect on the Company's business, financial condition and results of operations.
 
We rely on specialized equipment, including a limited number of SFD® sensors and this limitation may affect our ability to conduct business.
 
We rely on specialized data acquisition equipment, including a limited number of SFD® sensor devices, to conduct our aerial SFD® survey operations. We would be at risk if these survey sensors were to become damaged, destroyed, worn out, stolen or in any way became unavailable for use in operations prior to us creating and testing additional sensors. Should the sensors become unavailable for any reason, our ability to conduct surveys could be delayed for several months as we built new sensors. During this period we may become unable to satisfy contractual obligations, which may jeopardize future revenue opportunities and may potentially result in a client drawing on a contract performance bond posted by the Company or otherwise making claims against the Company for breach of contract. In addition, an inability to satisfy contractual obligations may have an adverse effect on our developing reputation within the oil and gas community.
 
NXT seeks to mitigate this risk by researching new designs and constructing additional SFD® sensor devices.
 
 
 
11
 
 
As the Company is in the early commercialization phase, SFD® surveys have not been tested over all potential geological conditions. Some geological conditions may subsequently be proven to be unsuited for SFD® surveys thereby creating unforeseen limitations to the application of SFD® surveys.
 
Any limitation to the application of SFD® surveys has the potential of restricting future revenue opportunities and if not properly disclosed to industry clients, such limitations may impact the reputation of the Company with these clients.
 
Unless we pursue ongoing technological improvement and development, we may be unable to respond to changes in customer requirements or new competitive technologies.
 
We must continue to refine and develop our SFD® survey system to make it scalable for growth and to respond to potential future competitive pressures. These improvements require substantial time and resources. Furthermore, even if resources are available, there can be no assurance that the Company will be commercially or technically successful in enhancing the technology. Our inability to keep pace with new technologies and evolving industry standards and demands could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.
 
We rely on a limited number of key personnel who collectively possess the knowledge and skills to conduct SFD® surveys and interpret SFD® data as required to meet contract obligations. Additional or replacement personnel cannot be found and trained quickly. The loss of any of these key persons or increased demand for our services from clients could impair our ability to meet contract obligations, thereby adversely impacting our reputation and our ability to earn future revenue from clients.
 
We rely on a limited number of key personnel who collectively possess the knowledge and skills to conduct SFD® surveys and interpret SFD® data as required to meet contract obligations. Additional or replacement personnel cannot be found and trained quickly. The loss of any of these key persons or increased demand for our services from clients could impair our ability to meet contract obligations, thereby adversely impacting our reputation and our ability to earn future revenue from clients.
 
The Company's future success depends, to a significant extent, on the continued service of its key technical and management personnel and on our ability to continue to attract and retain qualified employees. The loss of the services of our employees or a failure to attract, retain and motivate qualified personnel could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations. We do not have “key man” insurance on any of our personnel.
 
The Company put in place employment agreement with its President and CEO, Mr. Liszicasz.
 
We have a dependence on Mr. Liszicasz and three other staff members to be involved in the SFD® data interpretation process and to continue to enhance our technology. We are working to minimize dependency on key personnel. Mr. Liszicasz has trained and continues to train a team of signal interpreters to minimize our reliance on him to perform these functions. Currently, a total of four persons, two of which are highly experienced, are trained to interpret SFD® signals. In addition we are developing new algorithm that once completed and if successful, will reduce their reliance of these key persons in the interpretation of SFD® signals.
 
Although we have engaged employees with suitable credentials to work with Mr. Liszicasz to enhance our interpretation process and further develop the SFD® technology, if we are unable to reduce dependence on Mr. Liszicasz and he becomes incapable of performing or unwilling to perform these functions, then there may be an adverse effect on our ability to interpret the data from SFD® surveys or to enhance our technology.
 
Within the province of Alberta, the skilled personnel that we require may periodically be in short supply and there is specialized training required that can take several months in order for a new employee to become effective. If we cannot hire these key personnel, we have inadequate time to train them or should we lose current personnel, then our ability to accept contracts or meet contract commitments may be adversely affected, thereby restricting our ability to earn revenue.
 
 
 
12
 
 
Cyberattacks or other breaches of our technology hardware and software, as well as risks associated with compliance and data privacy could have an adverse effect on our systems, our service to our customers, our reputation, our competitive position, and financial results. 
 
Our ability to manage our operations successfully is critical to our success. Our business relies on our ability to electronically gather, compile, process, store and distribute data and other information. Unintended interruptions or failures resulting from computer and telecommunications failures, equipment or software malfunction, power outages, catastrophic events, security breaches (such as unauthorized access by hackers), social engineering schemes, unauthorized access, errors in usage by our employees, computer viruses, ransomware or malware, and other events could harm our business.
 
In April 2019, we were the target of a ransomware attack that involved the infiltration and infection of our computer systems.  We made no payments relating to the ransomware, and believe we lost no data.  Following the ransomware incident, we began undertaking remediation efforts and other steps to enhance our data security infrastructure. In connection with these efforts, we have incurred costs and expect to incur additional costs as we take further steps to prevent unauthorized access to our systems and the data we maintain.  We cannot provide any assurance that all potential causes of the incident have been identified and remediated and will not occur again.  While we have taken measures to minimize the impact of these problems, the proper functioning of these systems is critical to our business operations. Any security breach or failure in our computer equipment, systems or data could result in the interruption of our business operations and adversely impact our financial results.
 
There is no certainty that an investor can trade our common shares on public markets at a stable market price.
 
The Company has historically had a limited public market for our common shares on the TSX Venture Exchange (the “TSX-V”), and the United States (“U.S.”) OTC Markets Group’s Venture Stage Marketplace (the “OTCQB”) and there is a risk that a broader or more active public trading market for our common shares will not develop or be sustained, or that current trading levels will not be sustained. Effective March 22, 2016, the Company’s application to graduate from the TSX-V to the broader Toronto Stock Exchange (“TSX”), Canada’s premier stock exchange listing, was approved.
 
The market price for the common shares on the exchanges where our stock is listed has been and we anticipate will continue to be, extremely volatile and subject to significant price and volume fluctuations in response to a variety of external and internal factors. This is especially true with respect to emerging companies such as ours. Examples of external factors, which can generally be described as factors that are unrelated to the operating performance or financial condition of any particular Company, include changes in interest rates and worldwide economic and market conditions, as well as changes in industry conditions, such as changes in oil and natural gas prices, oil and natural gas inventory levels, regulatory and environment rules and announcements of technology innovations or new products by other companies. Examples of internal factors, which can generally be described as factors that are directly related to our consolidated financial condition or results of operations, would include release of reports by securities analysts and announcements we may make from time to time relative to our operating performance, clients exploration results, financing, advances in technology or other business developments.
 
Because we have a limited operating history and a limited history of profitability to date, the market price for the common shares is more volatile than that of a seasoned issuer. Changes in the market price of the common shares, for example, may have no connection with our operating results or the quality of services provided to clients. No predictions or projections can be made as to what the prevailing market price for the common shares will be at any time, or as to what effect, if any, that the sale of shares or the availability of common shares for sale at any time will have on the prevailing market price. Given the relatively low historic trading volumes, small trades of NXT’s common shares can adversely and potentially dramatically affect the market prices for those shares.
 
 
 
13
 
 
Accordingly, investors in our common stock should anticipate both volatile stock price and poor liquidity unless these conditions change.
 
You will be subject to the penny stock rules to the extent our stock price on the OTCQB is less than $5.00.
 
Since the common shares are not listed on a national stock exchange within the United States, trading in the common shares on the OTCQB is subject, to the extent the market price for the common shares is less than $5.00 per share, to a number of regulations known as the "penny stock rules". The penny stock rules, subject to certain exemptions, require a broker-dealer to deliver a standardized risk disclosure, the form of which is developed by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) to provide the customer with additional information, including current bid and offer quotations for the penny stock, the compensation of the broker-dealer and its salesperson in the transaction, monthly account statements showing the market value of each penny stock held in the customer's account, make a special written determination that the penny stock is a suitable investment for the purchaser and to receive the purchaser's written agreement to the transaction. To the extent these requirements may be applicable, they will reduce the level of trading activity in the secondary market for the common shares and may severely and adversely affect the ability of broker-dealers to sell the common shares.
 
You should not expect to receive dividends in the foreseeable future.
 
We have never paid any cash dividends on our common shares and we do not anticipate that we will pay any dividends in the foreseeable future. Our current business plan is to retain any future earnings to finance the expansion of our business. Any future determination to pay cash dividends will be at the discretion of our Board and will be dependent upon our consolidated financial condition, results of operations, capital requirements and other factors as our Board may deem relevant at that time.
 
Our right to issue additional capital stock at any time could have an adverse effect on your proportionate ownership and voting rights.
 
We are authorized under our Articles of Incorporation to issue an unlimited number of common shares and an unlimited number of preferred shares. We may issue these shares under such circumstances and in such manner and at such times, prices, amounts and purposes as our Board may, in its discretion, determine to be necessary and appropriate, subject to compliance with all applicable exchange regulations and corporate and securities laws. Proportionate ownership and voting rights of common shareholders could be adversely affected by the issuance of additional common shares which may result in common share value dilution.
 
We may not be able to protect our trade secrets and intellectual property from competitors who would use this knowledge to eliminate or reduce our technological advantage.
 
Our success and future revenue growth will depend, in part, on our ability to protect our intellectual property (“IP”). We have commenced an IP strategy process to obtain patents related to the SFD® technology, while also utilizing “trade secrets” protection of the proprietary nature of our technology as applicable.
 
Initiatives to expand and protect our IP (including patenting and new R&D initiatives) have been very successful. Squire Patton Boggs LLP, a U.S. based leader in IP protection, has been advising NXT on our IP strategy, including the prior filing of an initial US provisional patent application in May 2012. In November 2014, NXT filed a related patent amendment submission in the US and since that time has undertaken new patent applications in select strategic international markets.
 
So far, SFD® patents applications have been filed in nine (9) jurisdictions worldwide.  Thus far forty-four (44) patents have been granted: two (2) in U.S., and one (1) in each of the following countries: Canada, Japan, China, Russia, and Mexico. NXT has recently received confirmation of patents granted from the European Patent Office. This brings the total number of countries granting the patent to 44. The SFD® patents serve an important purpose beyond the protection they provide to the proprietary SFD® technology. Our patents also serve as an independent third-party verification of the scientific principles that form the basis of the SFD® process and its application.
 
 
 
14
 
 
The patent protection application process requires disclosure of at least some aspects of our SFD® technology to third parties and ultimately public disclosure. This disclosure could significantly increase the risk of unlawful use of our technology by third parties. Furthermore, we have no assurance that, even if we seek patent protection, a patent could be registered to protect our IP in all or any jurisdictions within North America or other countries throughout the world. If registered, there can be no assurance that it would be sufficiently broad to protect our technology or that any potential patent would not be challenged, invalidated or circumvented or that any right granted thereunder would provide meaningful protection or a competitive advantage to us. Finally, protection afforded by patents is limited by the financial resources available to legally defend IP rights. We currently do not possess the required financial resources to fund a lengthy defense of our rights if challenged by a much larger competitor or an oil and gas company.
 
We do enjoy common and contract law protection of our technology and trade secrets. Employees and contractors are governed by confidentiality agreements as well as a fiduciary responsibility to protect our technology, supporting documentation and other proprietary information.
 
Our strongest protection of the SFD® technology comes from restricting access to knowledge concerning the technology. Only a very limited number of NXT personnel have access to or knowledge of the underlying SFD® technology and no one employee and only one officer has access or knowledge of all aspects of the SFD® system. Currently, no third party has any significant knowledge of the technology. As further protection, SFD® equipment does not leave the direct control of NXT employees, thereby preventing unauthorized replication of the equipment.
 
The Company reassesses the appropriateness of its IP protection strategy on an ongoing basis and seeks advice from IP advisors as necessary.
 
It is possible that a third party will copy or otherwise obtain and use the Company's technology without authorization, develop a similar technology independently or design around the Company's secrets. Accordingly, there can be no assurance that the steps taken by the Company to prevent misappropriation or infringement of our IP will be successful.
 
An inability to protect our IP would make it possible for competitors to offer similar products and services that could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.
 
We experience operational hazards in our flight operations that may subject us to potential claims in the event that an incident or accident occurs.
 
We experience operational hazards in our flight operations that may subject us to potential claims in the event that an incident or accident occurs.
 
The flight operations of SFD® surveys are subject to the hazards associated with general flight operations. An aircraft accident may cause personal injury and loss of life, as well as severe damage to and destruction of property or the SFD® sensors and related equipment.
 
Independent third parties provide all the services required to maintain and operate the aircraft; they bear the primary risks of flight operations. These services are provided by an organization accredited by Transport Canada to operate aircraft in accordance with Transport Canada approved and audited operating procedures. The aircraft operator employs the required pilots, aircraft maintenance engineers and support personnel and ensures that they operate within their Transport Canada operating certificate. Our employees do not perform any airworthiness or flight safety operations.
 
We require the flight contractor to maintain appropriate insurance coverage for the risks associated with aircraft operations and we obtain insurance coverage to provide us with additional risk protection. In addition, we maintain general business insurance coverage, and believe that this insurance and the policy limits are appropriate for the operational risks that we incur.
 
Despite our policy to not operate the aircraft directly and our insurance coverage, we cannot avoid or alternatively be insured for all risks of flight operations. In the event of an incident or accident we may be sued by injured parties in excess of our policy limits or for damages that are not covered by our insurance policy. The magnitude of a lawsuit of this nature is not determinable. Furthermore, to the extent that our SFD® equipment is damaged, we may be unable to conduct SFD® surveys for several months following an accident.
 
 
 
15
 
 
We are a Canadian Company and our nationality may impair the enforceability of a judgment for any person resident outside Canada.
 
Since we are a Canadian company and most of our assets and key personnel are located in Canada, you may not be able to enforce a U.S. judgment for claims you may bring against us, our assets, our key personnel or many of the experts named in this document. This may prevent you from receiving compensation to which you may otherwise have a claim.
 
We are organized under the laws of Alberta, Canada and substantially all of our assets are normally located in Canada. In addition, all but two of our current members of our Board and all of our officers are residents of Canada. As a result, it may be impossible for you to affect service of process upon us or these individuals within the U.S. or to enforce any judgments in civil and commercial matters, including judgments under U.S. federal securities laws. In addition, a Canadian court may not permit you to bring an original action in Canada or to enforce in Canada a judgment of a U.S. court based upon civil liability provisions of the U.S. federal securities laws.
 
We conduct operations in foreign countries, which exposes us to several risks that may have a material adverse effect on the Company.
 
We conduct operations in foreign countries, which exposes us to several risks that may have a material adverse effect on the Company.
 
Criminal Activity and Social Instability – We have operated in the past in foreign countries such as Colombia, which over the past two decades experienced significant social upheaval and criminal activity relating to drug trafficking, kidnapping and terrorist acts. While the situation has improved dramatically in recent years, there can be no guarantee that the situation will not deteriorate again, nor are these risks eliminated as yet. Furthermore, other potential international survey locations may have similar or other indeterminate criminal or social instability risks.
 
Systemic criminal activity in a country or isolated criminal acts may disrupt operations, impact our ability to earn revenue, dramatically add to our cost of operations or potentially prevent us from earning any survey revenue in a country.
 
In addition, foreign markets may be susceptible to a higher risk of corruption and bribery. All of NXT’s employees, contractors and independent sales agents are required to adhere to the Company’s code of conduct and business ethics, which prohibits illegal activities, including any acts of bribery or corruption.
 
Political Instability - Any changes in regulations or shifts in political attitudes are beyond the control of the Company and may adversely affect our business. Exploration may be affected in varying degrees by government regulations which have the effect of restricting exploration and production activities. These changes may adversely impact the laws and policies governing price controls, export controls, foreign exchange controls, income taxes, expropriation of property, environmental legislation, site safety or other areas.
 
Currently, there are no restrictions (other than the payment of local with-holding taxes) on the repatriation back to Canada of our earnings in foreign countries in which we have operated, such as Colombia and Bolivia; however, there can be no assurance that significant restrictions on repatriation to Canada of earnings will not be imposed in the future.
 
Our operations may also be adversely affected by changes in laws and policies in Canada impacting foreign travel and immigration, foreign trade, taxation and investment.
 
Commercial Disputes – While operating in a foreign country, we are subjected to local commercial laws which often involve executing contracts in a foreign language. Although every effort is made to ensure we have access to an accurate English translation, misunderstanding and potential disputes between parties may arise.
 
 
 
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In the event of a dispute arising in connection with our foreign operations for any reason, we may be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of foreign courts or may not be successful in subjecting foreign persons to the jurisdictions of the courts of Canada or enforcing Canadian judgments in such other jurisdictions. We may also be hindered or prevented from enforcing our rights with respect to a government instrumentality because of the doctrine of sovereign immunity.
 
Accordingly, these risk factors have the potential of adversely reducing the level of survey revenue from our clients, our ability to operate effectively or our ability to be paid for our services and may have a material adverse effect on our financial position.
 
Where possible, NXT utilizes risk mitigation products offered by entities such as Export Development Canada (“EDC”). EDC financial products include insurance coverage of contract accounts receivable, guarantee support for contract performance bonds and wrongful call insurance for such bonds.
 
We rely upon the right to conduct airborne surveys in foreign countries. These foreign operations expose us to the risks that we will be prevented from conducting surveys when requested by clients.
 
The operation of our business, namely conducting aerial SFD® surveys and interpreting SFD® data, is not subject to material governmental or environmental regulation in Canada and the United States with the exception of flight rules issued by Transport Canada and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (“FAA”) governing the use of commercial aircraft, including rules relating to low altitude flights. The requirements in other countries vary greatly and may require permits and/or provide other restrictions to conducting flight operations in the country that may restrict our ability to perform SFD® surveys.
 
For example, in South American countries in which we have operated, such as Colombia and Bolivia, SFD® surveys must comply with additional requirements not encountered in Canada and the United States, including customs obligations and bonds related to the importation and exportation of the aircraft into the country, obtaining permits from the local aviation authority and obtaining permits from the local Air Force. We have successfully operated in South America and other global regions in accordance with these typical requirements.
 
With our North America and International experience to date, we do not anticipate any government controls or regulations that will prevent timely completion of SFD® surveys. However, we may encounter government restrictions in other countries that may impact or restrict our ability to conduct surveys.
 
If we encounter government regulation and restrictions that impact or prevent us from conducting surveys in any country, then we will not be able to earn revenue in the country and we may be exposed to forfeiting any performance bonds which may have been issued.
 
Credit Risk
 
Credit risk arises from the potential that the Company may incur a loss if counterparty to a financial instrument fails to meet its obligation in accordance with agreed terms. The Company’s financial instruments that are exposed to concentrations of credit risk consist primarily of cash and cash equivalents, short-term investments and accounts receivable. The carrying value of cash and cash equivalents, short-term investments, and accounts receivable reflects management’s assessment of credit risk. At December 31, 2020, cash and cash equivalents and short-term investments included balances in bank accounts, term deposits and guaranteed investment certificates, placed with financial institutions with investment grade credit ratings. The majority of the Company’s accounts receivable relate to sales to one customer in Nigeria and is exposed to foreign country credit risks. The Company manages this credit risk by requiring advance payments before entering into certain contract milestones and when possible accounts receivable insurance.
 
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We caution that the factors referred to above and those referred to as part of particular forward-looking statements may not be exhaustive and that new risk factors emerge from time to time in our rapidly changing business environment.
 
ITEM 4. 
INFORMATION ON THE COMPANY
 
A.            
History and development of the Company.
 
We are a technology company focused on providing a service to oil and natural gas exploration clients using our proprietary SFD® remote sensing airborne survey system. SFD® and NXT® are both registered trademarks of NXT Energy Solutions Inc.
 
NXT’s corporate history is summarized as follows:
 
NXT was incorporated under the laws of the State of Nevada on September 27, 1994 as Auric Mining Corporation.
 
In January 1996, NXT acquired all of the common stock of NXT Energy USA, Inc. (which was then known as Pinnacle Oil Inc.) from its shareholders in exchange for common shares. As a consequence of this reverse acquisition, NXT Energy USA Inc. became a wholly owned subsidiary and its shareholders acquired a 92% controlling interest in NXT’s common shares.
 
Prior to this reverse acquisition transaction, NXT was a corporate shell conducting no active business, and NXT Energy USA Inc. was a development stage research and development enterprise holding the worldwide rights to use what is now our SFD® technology for hydrocarbon exploration purposes.
 
Shortly thereafter, on February 23, 1996 we changed our name to Pinnacle Oil International, Inc. and on June 13, 2000, subsequently changed our name to Energy Exploration Technologies.
 
On October 24, 2003, our shareholders approved the continuance of the Company from the State of Nevada to the Province of Alberta, Canada under the Business Corporations Act (Alberta) (the “ABCA”). Also, our name was modified to Energy Exploration Technologies Inc. (“EETI”).
 
On September 22, 2008 EETI changed its name to NXT Energy Solutions Inc. by way of Articles of Amendment filed pursuant to the ABCA.
 
Our registered office is located at 302, 3320 – 17th AVE SW, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T3E 0B4 and our telephone number is (403) 264-7020.
 
We are a reporting issuer in Alberta, Ontario, and British Columbia and are principally governed by the Alberta Securities Commission in accordance with the Securities Act (Alberta) and the Business Corporations Act (Alberta). We are a foreign private issuer under United States securities laws and are subject to the regulation of the US Securities in accordance with the Exchange Act.
 
The underlying technology employed by our SFD® survey system was invented by Mr. Liszicasz, our President and CEO, chairman and largest shareholder. The technology was initially licensed to the Company by Mr. Liszicasz until December 31, 2006 through a series of consecutive license agreements. On December 31, 2006, we obtained the rights to the technology from Mr. Liszicasz pursuant to the terms of the TTA.
 
Upon execution of the TTA, Mr. Liszicasz transferred to us all his rights and entitlements to the SFD® technology for use in the field of hydrocarbon exploration.
 
 
 
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On April 18, 2021 the TTA was amended so that Mr. Liszicasz transferred to us all his rights and entitlements to the SFD® technology for the use in the field of geothermal resources.
 
SFD® technology for the purposes of the TTA is defined as the theories of quantum physics and engineering which are utilized in the operation of stress field detectors used by NXT for the reception, collection and recording of subsurface geological stresses for hydrocarbon exploration and geothermal resources.
 
Our business does not normally rely on significant capital expenditures other than period regulatory additions for the aircraft. As described in below in “Property and equipment and related amortization expense” a significant expenditure was incurred for acquiring and installing in its aircraft a new transponder technology known as ADS-B in 2019. For 2021, we do not anticipate further significant upgrades for the aircraft. For the last three fiscal years, the Company made capital expenditures for property and equipment of $nil (2020), $216,691 (2019) and $10,006 (2018). These annual expenditures normally relate largely to upgrades to office computer equipment and SFD® survey equipment.
 
The Company does not currently have any significant capital expenditures in progress, or planned for the short term, for Canada or other international operations.
 
SEC maintains an internet site (http://www.sec.gov), which contains reports, proxy and information statements, and other information regarding NXT that we file electronically with the SEC. Our website is http://www.nxtenergy.com.
 
B.            
Business overview.
 
Description of the nature of the Company’s operations and principal activities
 
We utilize our proprietary, airborne SFD® survey system to provide a service for the oil and gas exploration industry. NXT provides a rapid and cost-effective method for our clients to evaluate large land areas for their exploration potential.
 
The underlying technology employed by our SFD® survey system was invented by Mr. Liszicasz, our President and Chief Executive Officer, Chairman and one of our largest shareholders. The technology was initially licensed to the Company by Mr. Liszicasz until December 31, 2006 through a series of consecutive license agreements. On December 31, 2006 we obtained the rights to the technology from Mr. Liszicasz pursuant to the terms of the TTA.
 
Upon execution of the TTA, Mr. Liszicasz transferred to NXT all his rights and entitlements to the SFD® technology for use in the field of hydrocarbon exploration and on April 18, 2021 all his rights and entitlements to the SFD® technology for geothermal resources.
 
For further details of the TTA, see “Section 10.1” below.
 
SFD® technology for the purposes of the TTA is defined as the theories of quantum physics and engineering which are utilized in the operation of stress field detectors used by NXT for the reception, collection and recording of subsurface geological stresses for hydrocarbon exploration and geothermal resources.
 
SFD® sensors remotely respond to gravity perturbations and changes in subsurface stress regimes that are meaningful for oil and gas exploration and geothermal resources. These responses are captured as raw data that when interpreted, can provide an indirect method to detect the presence of geological features such as structures, faults, fractures and reefs that are often associated with traps and reservoir accumulations. SFD® is highly effective in frontier and under-explored areas, in offshore or onshore environments and over any terrain. The SFD® survey system has been demonstrated to quickly focus exploration resources, offering the benefit of reducing the risk, time and expense associated with frontier exploration.
 
 
 
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Following completion of the aerial surveys, we deliver to our clients a detailed report and maps of the surveyed area that identifies, ranks and recommends areas with SFD® indications of reservoir potential.
 
In 2006, we commenced our current business model and began providing SFD® survey services to clients on a fee-for-service basis. In accordance with this model, we have not invested either directly or indirectly in exploration or development wells or engaged in other exploration or production activities. Our current business model minimizes our capital requirements, thereby conserving cash and minimizes any perceived or real conflicts between the interests of NXT and its survey clients.
 
NXT’s primary business model is to earn revenues by conducting SFD® surveys for clients on a fee-for-service basis. Secondly, we may be able to negotiate to earn revenue from gross overriding royalty income and/or other incentive fees from clients should they generate production on areas recommended by SFD® surveys. Finally, in the future, we may earn a fee by providing other related geological and geophysical integration services to clients.
 
We also continue to utilize high quality local sales representatives with key knowledge of their respective areas, potential clients and the exploration potential of a region allowing NXT to cover larger areas and more clients with minimum fixed cost. Our sales representatives continue to pursue SFD® opportunities in numerous regions including Africa, Latin America, the Middle-East and Southeast Asia. Furthermore, to ensure our sales representatives follow industry best practices, each representative is required to annually certify they adhere to NXT's code of conduct and business ethics.
 
In support of these sales efforts, NXT has also been effective in positioning the SFD® method as an established geophysical tool for oil & gas exploration following the successful completion of projects in Latin America (Bolivia and Mexico) with the publication of technical papers and the creation of project case studies. In addition, NXT has now been granted patents or received patent allowance in 44 separate countries.
 
Our overall objective remains to continue to increase industry awareness and appreciation of the value of our SFD® survey system and our strategy to achieve this includes maximizing client endorsement opportunities (such as through joint case studies) and targeting the most appropriate markets (i.e. where SFD® provides the maximum benefits). Our specific tactics include:
 
1.
Focus sales resources on high profile primary markets which offer the maximum opportunity for success;
 
2.
Build upon success in this initial market, and step out to other markets in Latin America, and in South Asia;
 
3.
Pursue requests of interest from qualified potential client "bluebirds" from all other locations in the world. The bluebird model is defined as an opportunity that arises, not from deliberate targeted sales initiatives, but in response to unsolicited client enquiries;
 
4.
Continue to conduct pilot surveys to expand our knowledge base and provide documentation to support the use of SFD® in new applications. Each new application opens more market opportunities and provides valuable case studies to support our sales initiatives; and
 
5.
Respond to opportunities to present at technical conferences, publish papers in periodicals and generally maximize our opportunities to educate the industry on SFD® capabilities and document case study successes.
 
We continue to progress and grow our project pipeline on a fee for survey project basis.
 
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Description of the principal markets in which the Company competes
 
We have an opportunity to provide our services in any region of the world where oil and gas exploration activities are conducted. However, we choose to be strategic and focus our limited marketing and sales resources in a limited number of markets in the early stages of commercialization.
 
A summary of revenues derived in our primary geographic market segments for the last 3 fiscal years, and highlights of global survey operations, follows:
 
 
 
Year ended December 31,
 
 
 
2020
 
 
2019
 
 
2018
 
African and Middle East Markets
 $- 
 $11,976,149 
 $- 
Other
  136,566 
  - 
  - 
 
  136,566 
  11,976,149 
  - 
 
 
North America Market
 
In February 2019, NXT entered into a Co-operative Agreement with one of its largest shareholders, Alberta Green Ventures Limited Partnership (“AGV”), to propose up to three SFD® surveys within two years. The Co-operative Agreement was based on a cost plus formula and a gross overriding royalty interest in oil and gas production arising on lands subject to the surveys.
 
The fees payable by AGV were partially secured by a US$100,000 non-refundable deposit. As AGV did not complete at least one of three SFD® surveys by June 30, 2020. The non-refundable deposit was forfeited to NXT in 2020.
 
Latin America and Central America Markets
 
NXT completed the data acquisition and interpretation of 37,596 line-km for the first ever SFD® Multi-Client survey in the Gulf of Mexico in June 2017. The airborne survey was conducted over the area that was identified by National Hydrocarbon Commission (“CNH”) for the shallow water bid round 2.1 covering the Tampicao-Misantla, Veracruz and Cuencas del Sureste exploration areas. The survey data provides 100% grid coverage over the offshore blocks offered in Bid Round 2.1, an area of approximately 8,900 square kilometers and was completed ahead of time and budget. In addition, NXT acquired incidental data over many of the 35 blocks offered in the recently concluded Bid Round 3.1. Based on the Five-Year Tender Program for the Exploration and Extraction of Hydrocarbons 2015 - 2019 by the Mexican Secretary of Energy, much of the remaining data will also be applicable to future Bid Rounds. To date, there have been no sales of this proprietary data.
 
 
 
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Asia Markets
 
In October 2018, we signed an MOU with BGP Inc., a subsidiary of China National Petroleum Corporation, to further explore opportunities for NXT and BGP Inc. to work together. It was extended for an additional two years in September 2020. NXT’s forward strategy is to secure SFD® contracts with BGP and its affiliates.
 
African and Middle East Markets
 
In March 2019, the Company signed an US$8.9 million contract with PE to provide 5,000 line kilometers of SFD® surveys in Nigeria. As the Nigerian SFD® Survey was the Company's first project in Africa, the Company was required to deliver more than 10,000 pages of documents to Nigerian National Petroleum Company (the “NNPC”) and the Department of Petroleum Resources, a department under Nigeria's Ministry of Petroleum Resources, and complete a test flight as part of the qualification process which took seven months. Data acquisition operations were completed on May 1, 2019 and NXT's recommendations were delivered in the third quarter of 2019.
 
Prior to entering into the Nigerian SFD® Survey contract with PE, the Company conducted significant due diligence to ensure it understood the business environment in Nigeria and was in compliance with applicable laws in each of Canada, the United States of America and Nigeria. The Company also engaged Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP and Kreller Group as advisors to provide guidance and to ensure the integrity of its contract with PE, as well as PE's contract with NNPC.
 
The Company has received payments of US$8.4 million for the Nigerian SFD® Survey as at the date hereof. The contracted holdback amount of approximately US$0.5 million is should be paid to the Company upon the conclusion of negotiations for additional work under the current contract framework.
 
The Department of Petroleum Resources (the "DPR"), a department under the Federal Republic of Nigeria's Ministry of Petroleum Resources responsible for the sustainable development of Nigeria's oil and gas resources, provided written confirmation of their recommendation in favour of NXT's SFD® technology based on the recent survey results, noting specifically "in line with federal government aspiration to increase its Oil and Gas reserves base at a considerable reduced cost, risk and optimize exploration cycle, the Stress Field Detection SFD® technology is hereby adopted and recommended to be deployed as an independent data exploration tool for hydrocarbon exploration to identify and rank prospect-level leads to focus exploration efforts in the Nigerian Oil and Gas industry".
 
In December, 2020 the Company received a deposit of US$100,000 to sell pre-existing SFD® data. The SFD® data is expected to be delivered to the customer in the second quarter of 2021.
 
In March 2020, the Company signed a memorandum of understanding with an independent oil company with interests in East-Central Africa.
 
Other
 
Revenues for the year ended December 31, 2020 were the result in the recognition of a forfeited non-refundable deposit from AGV, payable pursuant to the Co-operation Agreement.
 
Notes Receivable
 
On September 6, 2019, NXT and AGV entered into a loan arrangement whereby NXT loaned to AGV US$250,000 for the purpose of providing AGV with additional funds necessary to continue advancing the common objectives of the parties under the Co-operation Agreement and the Sales Representative Agreement. The note receivable was fully collected in the year.
 
 
 
22
 
 
Description of seasonality of the Company’s main business
 
There is no seasonality to our business. NXT does however, have a very cyclical business, as revenue activity is dependent upon the level of capital investment in exploration drilling in the oil & gas industry and the size and timing of a limited number of survey contracts each year.
 
Description of the sources and availability of raw materials
 
We do not foresee any constraints upon materials or equipment that will impede our ability to execute our business plan or affect our ability to conduct and/or expand our business. Our main direct project input costs are aircraft operating costs and data interpretation staff. None of these expenses have been subject to significant price volatility.
 
In order to conduct our survey operations, we require the following:
 
Survey aircraft – Historically, we have both owned aircraft and chartered aircraft from independent charter aircraft companies. From 2009 to December 2015, we utilized an aircraft charter agreement with Air Partners, a Calgary based air charter operator, to provide aircraft, crew and maintenance services for our survey operations worldwide In December 2015, we acquired from Air Partners a jet aircraft which was previously charter hired to NXT. In April 2017, NXT completed a sale and leaseback agreement of its aircraft with a Calgary based international aircraft services organization. The terms of the agreement resulted in NXT selling its’ 1997 Cessna Citation Ultra 560 jet aircraft. We currently rely on Air Partners as the manager / operator of the aircraft which we use in SFD® survey operations.
 
SFD® sensors - All of the survey sensors are manufactured in-house. Certain machining is required by third party machine shops, with final assembly performed by our technical staff. The sensors, once assembled, require flight testing prior to being considered acceptable for operational use. Not all sensors meet the performance criteria for operational use; however, we have demonstrated our ability to manufacture new functional SFD® sensors.
 
SFD® assembly - The units in which the sensors are incorporated are custom designed, fabricated and assembled in-house or through subcontracted vendors. We utilize the services of Transport Canada approved Design Approval Representatives to prepare subsequent type certificates (“STC”) for the installation of our SFD® units in each aircraft that we utilize for surveys. The time to obtain an STC approval for the installation of our SFD® units into any proposed aircraft type may require several months.
 
Computer hardware and software - (Data Acquisition System, SFD® Signal Conditioning Unit, and data Interpretation software). During 2016, a new data acquisition system completed final testing. The software was developed by in-house personnel and will be utilized on future surveys. The hardware we use in our SFD® survey systems (other than the SFD® unit), and the balance of the computer software we use, are all readily available from retail or wholesale sources.
 
We are not dependent upon any other third-party contract manufacturers or suppliers to satisfy our technology requirements.
 
Description of marketing channels
 
We largely use direct sales methods with use of independent commissioned sales representatives in international markets.
 
23
 
 
Summary information on dependence on patents, licenses and contracts
 
Patents
 
In May 2012, we commenced a “provisional” patent application process in the U.S. and formally filed a patent on May 22, 2013, which was subsequently published on November 28, 2013. We intend to continue expanding the process with additional formal patent applications in the future. We understand that our right to patent the SFD® technology is not compromised by our ongoing commercial use of the technology, as the components of the SFD® technology have never been disclosed to third parties (except under very limited and confidential terms) or released in any manner into the public domain.
 
Initiatives to expand and protect our IP (including patenting and new R&D initiatives) were very successful in 2017. Squire Patton Boggs LLP, a U.S. based leader in IP protection, has been advising NXT on our IP strategy, including the prior filing of an initial US provisional patent application in May 2012. In November 2014, NXT filed a related patent amendment submission in the US and since that time has undertaken new patent applications in select strategic international markets.
 
So far, SFD® patents have been granted in Russia (January 2017), Japan (July 2017), Canada (August 2017), Mexico (September 2017), the United States (two patents were granted in November 2017 and September 2018, respectively), China (April 2018), and Europe (January 2020).  In summary, the total number of countries granting our patents is 44.  In addition, two more patent applications (in Brazil and India) are pending. The patents serve an important purpose of the protection for our proprietary SFD® technology.  The patents also serve as multiple independent third-party recognitions of the technological invention in terms of practical applicability, conceptual novelty, and knowledge advancement.
 
Basis for statements made regarding competitive position
 
Our SFD® airborne survey service is based upon a proprietary technology, which is capable of remotely identifying, from a survey aircraft, subsurface anomalies associated with potential hydrocarbon traps with a resolution that we believe is technically superior to other airborne survey systems. To our knowledge there is no other company employing technology comparable to our SFD® survey system for oil and natural gas exploration.
 
Seismic is the standard technology used by the oil & gas industry to image subsurface structures. It is our view that the SFD® survey system is highly complementary to seismic analysis. Our system may reduce the need for seismic in wide-area reconnaissance but will not replace the role of seismic in verifying structure, closure and selecting drilling locations. The seismic industry is very competitive with many international and regional service providers.
 
The SFD® system can be used as a focusing tool for seismic. With an SFD® survey, a large tract (i.e. over 5,000 square kilometers) of land can be evaluated quickly to identify locations with indications of reservoir potential. Seismic surveys, although effective in identifying these locations, are much more expensive, require significantly more time and impose a much greater negative impact on local communities and the environment than more traditional methods. An SFD® survey deployed first can provide necessary information to target a seismic program over a limited area of locations selected by SFD®. This approach can result in a more effective seismic program and reduce the overall cost, time, community resistance and environmental impact required to locate and qualify a prospect.
 
The industry uses other technologies for wide area oil and natural gas reconnaissance exploration, such as aeromagnetic and gravity surveys. These systems can provide regional geological information, such as basement depth, sedimentary thickness and major faulting and structural development.
 
 
 
24
 
 
Description of material effects of governmental & environmental regulation
 
SFD® Survey Flight Operations
 
The operation of our business, namely conducting aerial SFD® surveys and interpreting SFD® data, is not subject to material governmental or environmental regulation in Canada and the U. S. with the exception of flight rules issued by Transport Canada and the Federal Aviation Authority governing the use of commercial aircraft, including rules relating to low altitude flights. The requirements in other countries vary greatly and may require permits and/or provide other restrictions to conducting flight operations in the country that may restrict our ability to perform SFD® surveys as freely as in Canada and the U.S.
 
For example, in Colombia, SFD® surveys must comply with three requirements not encountered in Canada and the United States. These requirements are i) customs obligations and bonds related to the importation and exportation of the aircraft into Colombia, ii) obtaining permits from the local aviation authority, and iii) obtaining permits from the Colombian Air Force. NXT has successfully operated in the past in Colombia in accordance with these requirements.
 
With our past experience in Nigeria, Canada, the U.S., Bolivia, Mexico, Colombia and other countries, we do not anticipate any unusual government controls or regulations that might significantly prevent timely completion of SFD® surveys. However, we may encounter unforeseen government regulations or restrictions in other countries that may impair or restrict our ability to conduct surveys, which could limit our ability to earn revenue or potentially expose NXT to forfeiture of performance bonds.
 
25
 
 
C.            
Organizational structure.
The following table provides a list of all subsidiaries and other companies controlled by NXT:
 
SubsidiariesDate and Manner of IncorporationAuthorized Share CapitalIssued and Outstanding SharesNature of the Business% of each Class of Shares owned by NXT
NXT Energy USA, Inc.October 20, 1995 by Articles of Incorporation – State of Nevada20,000,000 common5,000,000 commonInactive100%
      
NXT Aero USA, Inc.August 28, 2000 by Articles of Incorporation – State of Nevada1,000 common100 commonInactive100%
4,000 preferred   
      
Cascade Petroleum Inc. (Formerly Survey Services International Inc.)¹2011-09-06 by Articles of Incorporation – Province of AlbertaUnlimited number of common shares100 commonInactive100%
      
NXT Energy Services (SFD) Inc.2019-12-08 by Federal Articles of Incorporation – CanadaUnlimited number of common shares100 commonInactive100%
      
PetroCaza Exploration Inc.May 2015 by Articles of Incorporation Province of AlbertaUnlimited number of common and preferred shares100 commonInactive100%
¹On January 16th, 2017, the name of Survey Services International Inc. was changed to “Cascade Petroleum Inc.”
 
 
In addition, in March 2015, NXT registered NXT Energy Solutions Inc. (Sucursal Bolivia) as a wholly owned “Branch” entity under the laws of the Plurinational State of Bolivia, to contract and conduct survey operations in Bolivia. Operations have now ceased in Bolivia and we are in the process of closing the branch which should be completed in the second quarter of 2021.
 
D.            
Property, plant and equipment.
 
Facilities / Office Premises
 
In August 2015, NXT moved to a new office premises (11,333 square feet) at 3320 – 17th Avenue SW in Calgary under a 10-year lease at an initial estimated minimum monthly lease payment of $48,243 (including building operating costs) commencing in October 2015. See also Item 5.F “Contractual Obligations”.
 
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Aircraft
In order to perform our survey services, NXT requires to fly the survey area in a jet aircraft. In April 2017, NXT completed a sale and leaseback agreement of its aircraft with a Calgary based international aircraft services organization (the “Lessor”). The terms of the agreement resulted in NXT selling its’ 1997 Cessna Citation Ultra 560 jet aircraft that was purchased in 2015. NXT has leased the aircraft over an initial term of 60 months and retains all existing operating rights and obligations. NXT is required to make monthly payments to the Lessor of approximately US$39,500. NXT has the option to extend the term of the lease by an additional two years. Should NXT want to repurchase the aircraft at the end of the initial lease term, the purchase price is US$1,450,000. When the aircraft is not needed for use by NXT, we seek to earn charter hire reimbursements from the aircraft through a third party, Air Partners.
 
Air Partners also has access to an alternate, similar model aircraft (certified for the use of our survey equipment) which could be charter hired for use by NXT if needed.
 
Equipment
 
Our SFD® technology is comprised of three main components, detailed below, which we collectively refer to as our SFD® survey system. This system is generally stored at our Calgary office facility unless deployed during survey operations when this equipment would travel with the aircraft or be stored in a locked facility at the survey location when not in use. In addition, there is extensive interpretation equipment located in Calgary. The main categories of equipment we use are:
 
Stress Field Detector – The stress field detector, or SFD® system, including a unit which houses the SFD® sensors, is the principal component of our technology.  The SFD® sensors respond to fine-scale perturbations in the gravitational field caused by changes in subsurface density and stress distribution. These responses are transformed through electromechanical transduction into electronic digital signals as the output. The SFD® method has proven highly effective at identifying potential hydrocarbon traps in a wide variety of geological settings onshore and offshore. Airborne SFD® surveys are currently conducted utilizing an array of 22 SFD® sensors, consisting of six primary, eight secondary and eight research and development sensors, allowing multiple independent SFD® signals to be acquired at all points of a designed survey.  
SFD® Signal Conditioning Unit – This self-contained unit contains electronic circuits for powering the sensors and for stabilizing and conditioning electronic signals. All sensor output is directly connected to this unit and after signal conditioning is completed, all output is forwarded to the computer system.

Data Acquisition System – This is used in conjunction with the SFD® sensor array on surveys. Our data acquisition system is a compact, portable computer system which concurrently acquires the electronic digital signals from the SFD® sensor array and other pertinent client data, including the GPS location information of the data.
Interpretation Theatre – Once returned to our home base, the SFD® data collected is processed and converted into a format that can be used by our interpretation staff using systems consisting of generally off-the-shelf computer equipment, high definition monitors, projectors and screens. This equipment is generally permanently set up at our Calgary office facility. A remote SFD® data interpretation theater is available and may be deployed during survey operations and would be set up in a facility at the survey client's city.
 
Oil and Gas Properties
 
We have minor historical interests in a limited number of acreage holdings of undeveloped lands in western Canada. These assets are not a material asset and have been written off in our financial statements. We are not affected by any significant environmental concerns, nor is there any planned significant capital additions contemplated.
 
 
 
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ITEM 4A. 
UNRESOLVED STAFF COMMENTS
 
Not applicable.
 
ITEM 5. 
OPERATING AND FINANCIAL REVIEW AND PROSPECTS
 
The following discussion of our financial condition and results of operations should be read in conjunction with the “Selected Financial Data” and the accompanying Consolidated Financial Statements and the notes to those statements incorporated by reference elsewhere in this Form 20-F. The following discussion contains forward-looking statements that reflect our plans, estimates and beliefs. Our actual results could differ materially from those discussed in these forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to, those discussed below and elsewhere in this annual report, particularly under the caption “Risk Factors”.
 
A.            
Operating results.
 
Overall Operational Performance
 
Selected Annual InformationFor the year ended December 31,
 
 
2020
 
 
2019
 
 
2018
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Survey revenue
 $136,566 
 $11,976,149 
 $- 
Net comprehensive income (loss)
  (5,999,675)
  3,772,908 
  (6,968,511)
Net income (loss) per common share - basic
 $(0.09)
 $0.06 
 $(0.11)
Net income (loss) per common share - diluted
 $(0.09)
 $0.06 
 $(0.11)
Net cash generated by (used in) operating activities
  (3,452,925)
  4,052,406 
  (6,068,831)
Cash and short term investments
  3,031,407 
  6,639,757 
  4,239,532 
Total assets
  24,009,137 
  30,692,941 
  25,264,268 
Long term liabilities
  1,919,018 
  2,691,217 
  510,661 
 
Summary financial highlights for the last three fiscal years are as follows:
 
Financial Highlights for 2020
 
Cash and short-term investments at December 31, 2020 were $3.03 million;
Survey revenues 2020 were $0.14 million;
A net loss of $6.00 million was recorded for 2020, including stock based compensation and amortization expenses of $1.78 million;
Cash flow used in operating activities was $3.45 million 2020;
Net loss per Common Share for 2020 was ($0.09) basic and diluted;
General and administrative ("G&A") expenses for 2020 as compared to 2019 decreased by $0.33 million or 9%, due primarily to the CEWS, the CERS, the Scientific Research and Development Credit ("SR&ED"), and less travel than in 2019; and
The Employee Share Purchase Plan commenced in Q4-20 with approximately 75% employee participation.
 
 
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Financial Highlights for 2019
 
In Q3 the Company completed its Nigerian SFD® survey for approximately US$8.9 Million with PE Energy Limited (“PE”), a Nigerian oil and gas service company. PE had a contract with the NNPC, to provide 5,000-line kilometers of SFD® surveys in Nigeria;
As of the date of this 20-F, the Company has received a total of US$8.4 million payments in cash from PE for the SFD® survey in Nigeria, including US$1.9 million in Q4-19 and an additional US$0.47 million in Q1-20. The final payment for contracted holdbacks amount to approximately $0.5 million USD;
NXT received confirmation of a patent granted from the European Patent Office. This brings the total number of countries granting the patent to 44;
On September 6, 2019, NXT and AGV entered into a loan arrangement whereby NXT loaned to AGV US$250,000 for the purpose of providing AGV with additional funds necessary to continue advancing the common objectives of the parties. The note receivable was fully collected in 2020;
During Q4-19 the Company completed the C$1,250,000 targeted issuer bid, purchasing for cancellation 4,166,667 common shares in the capital of the Company representing approximately 6.08% of the total outstanding Common Shares as of November 14, 2019, at a price of C$0.30 per Common Share;
Cash and short-term investments at the end of the 2019 were $6.64 million;
There was $11.98 million of survey revenues recorded in 2019;
Net income of $3.77 million was recorded for 2019, including amortization expense of $1.78 million;
Operating activities provided $4.05 million of cash during 2019 and net cash used for financing activities was $1.39 million;
Net income per common share for 2019 was $0.06 basic and $0.06 fully diluted; and
General and administrative costs for 2019 as compared to 2018 have been reduced by $0.50 million or 13% mostly due a reduction in business development costs, lower headcount and costs and certain expenditures being recognized as direct survey costs, offset by higher professional fees and information technology costs.
 
Financial Highlights for 2018
 
Following the Company’s participation at the Upstream West Africa Summit in Senegal in Q2, NXT management traveled twice to Africa to meet with representatives of NNPC and the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation to discuss the benefits SFD® would bring to their current exploration programs;
Discussions with NNPC continued in the fourth quarter of 2018 and have resulted in the signing of a contract in March 2019 with PE, for the value of approximately $US8.9 million;
NXT has entered into a three year exclusive sales representative agreement with AGV, in nine jurisdictions in the Middle East and Latin America. This agreement expired in 2020;
NXT received notification of the granting of NXT's SFD® patent in China on April 13, 2018;
In September 2018, NXT received a U.S. patent for its new sensor design we term the “Cascade” configuration.
o
The Cascade sensor is the result of NXT’s continued research & development efforts and builds upon our existing US patent. Management believes the Company’s Cascade sensors will provide enhanced ability for identifying trapped fluid bodies indicative of potential hydrocarbon accumulations along with improved reliability and flexibility during SFD® survey operations;
In October 2018, we signed an MOU with BGP Inc., a subsidiary of China National Petroleum Corporation, to further explore opportunities for NXT and PGP Inc. to work together. NXT’s forward strategy is to secure SFD® contracts with BGP and its affiliates the MOU was extended for an additional two years in September 2020;
The MOU entered into between Generation Resource Discoveries (“GRD”), NXT’s regional representative, and the Government of Aceh, Indonesia on February 22, 2018, GRD has expired;
NXT completed a Private Placement financing on July 3, 2018 of $9,484,810 through the issuance of an aggregate of 10,264,946 units at $0.924 per unit (the "Private Placement"). Each unit consisted of one common share and one-third of one common share purchase warrant (each whole warrant, a "Warrant"), and each Warrant entitled the holder to acquire one common share at an exercise price of $1.20 for twelve (12) months from closing of the first tranche of the Private Placement on February 16, 2018. The Warrants expired on October 31, 2019;
 
 
29
 
 
No survey revenues were recorded in 2018;
A net loss of $6.97 million was recorded for 2018, including amortization expense of $1.79 million and stock-based compensation expense of $0.39 million;
Losses per common share was $0.11 for 2018 (basic and diluted);
Operating activities used $6.07 million as at 2018 and net cash from financing activities was $9.18 million;
General and administrative costs for 2018 as compared to 2017 have been reduced by $0.96 million or 19% mostly due to a reduction in headcount, public company costs and partially offset by increased business development activity; and
Cash and short-term investments at the end of the 2018 were $4.24 million.
 
Net Income (Loss)
 
For the year ended December 31
 
 
 
2020
 
 
2019
 
 
2018
 
Survey revenue
 $136,566 
 $11,976,149 
 $- 
Expenses
    
    
    
Survey costs
  1,091,587 
  2,611,086 
  1,103,946 
General and administrative
  3,341,010 
  3,541,594 
  4,385,243 
Amortization expense
  1,780,806 
  1,781,181 
  1,790,267 
 
  6,213,403 
  7,933,861 
  7,279,456 
Other expense (income), net
  (77,162)
  269,380 
  (310,945)
Income (loss) before income taxes
  (5,999,675)
  3,772,908 
  (6,968,511)
 Income tax expense (recovery)
  - 
  - 
  - 
Net income (loss) for the year
  (5,999,675)
  3,772,908 
  (6,968,511)
 
Expenses for the years ended December 31, 2020, 2019 and 2018
 
Survey costs – Survey expenses relate entirely to the direct survey costs and aircraft handling and maintenance costs, net of charter hire reimbursements.
 
In 2020, aircraft operations were incurred for aircraft handling and maintenance costs. Fixed aircraft costs were lower in 2020 versus 2019 as maintenance was performed on the aircraft before and after the Nigerian SFD® Survey during 2019. In 2020, less scheduled maintenance was required as less hours were flown on the aircraft. Survey project costs in 2019 were the direct costs of the Nigerian SFD® Survey.
 
In 2019, survey expenses included direct incremental survey costs for the Nigerian SFD® Survey incurred which include aircraft and hanger operating costs, staff costs to support the survey, and mobilization/demobilization costs. Also these costs include staff costs to interpret and integrate the survey, and their travel costs. Aircraft operations costs in 2019 were higher than 2018 as additional scheduled maintenance was required after the Nigerian SFD® Survey, net of charter hire reimbursements.
 
The aircraft is available for charter to third parties through our aircraft manager when it is not being used by NXT. Any charter hire reimbursements received are used to offset aircraft costs.
 
In April 2017, NXT completed a sale and leaseback agreement of its aircraft with a Calgary-based international aircraft services organization (the "Lessor"). NXT has leased the aircraft over an initial term of 60 months and retains all existing operating rights and obligations. NXT is required to make monthly payments to the Lessor of approximately US$39,500. NXT has the option to extend the term of the lease by an additional two years for payments of approximately US$22,500 per month. Should NXT want to repurchase the aircraft at the end of the initial lease term, the purchase price will be US$1.45 million.
 
 
 
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G&A expense - G&A is a major component of NXT's total expenses. All salaries and overhead costs related to SFD® data interpretation staff (other than out of country per diem allowances) are included in G&A, and not included with direct survey expenses. The categories included in G&A expense are as follows:
 
G&A expense
 
 For the year ended December 31,
 
 
 
2020
 
 
2019
 
 
2018
 
Salaries, benefits and consulting charges
 $1,383,692 
 $1,599,247 
 $2,046,886 
Board, professional fees, and public company costs
  920,666 
  857,556 
  781,330 
Indirect financing costs
  - 
  - 
  - 
Premises and administrative overhead
  728,036 
  800,626 
  753,380 
Business development
  140,200 
  240,356 
  382,146 
Bolivia/Colombia overhead
  - 
  - 
  35,347 
Total G&A before Stock based compensation
  3,172,594 
  3,497,785 
  3,999,089 
Stock based compensation (“SBCE”)
  168,416 
  43,809 
  386,154 
Total G&A
  3,341,010 
  3,541,594 
  4,385,243 
 
G&A expenses before SBCE decreased $325,191, or 9%, in 2020 compared to 2019 for the following reasons:
 
salaries, benefits and consulting charges decreased $215,555, or 13%, due primarily due to recording the CEWS and the SR&ED and one less permanent headcount;
 
board and professional fees and public company costs increased $63,110, or 7%, due primarily to increased audit fees due to increased audit requirements and consultant fees to process the SR&ED;
 
premises and administrative overhead costs decreased $72,590, or 9%, due primarily to recording of the CERS and decreased costs related to reduced office expenses;
 
business development costs decreased by $100,156, or 42%, due primarily to the restrictions on travel from the COVID-19 epidemic and therefore switching discussion to tele-conferences and on-line video conferencing.
 
G&A expenses before SBCE decreased by $501,304, or 13%, in 2019 compared to 2018 for the following reasons:
 
salaries, benefits and consulting charges decreased $447,639, or 22%, due primarily to a change to a lower cost mix in corporate staff, two less headcount and allocation of direct salary costs to survey costs;
 
board and professional fees and public company costs increased $76,226, or 10%, due primarily to higher professional fees paid in connection with the Nigerian SFD® Survey and higher insurance costs given the increased business activity (partially offset by termination costs to suspend the Advisory Board in 2018);
 
premises and administrative overhead increased $47,246, or 6%, due primarily to increased costs related to the improvement of the Company's information systems security;
 
business development costs decreased $141,790, or 37%, due primarily to Company resources focused on first the negotiation and then the implementation of the Nigerian SFD® Survey; and
 
Bolivian overhead costs decreased by $35,347, or 100%, as the Company officially closed its offices and ceased operations in that country in Q4-18.
 
 
 
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 SBCE
 
SBCE varies in any given quarter or year as it is a function of several factors including the number of units of each type of stock based compensation plan issued in the period and the amortization term (based on the term of the contract and/or number of years for full vesting of the units, which is normally three years) of the resultant expense. Also, SBCE is a function of periodic changes in the inputs used in the Black-Scholes option valuation model, such as volatility in NXT's trailing share price and for cash-settled stock-based compensation awards variability will occur based on changes to observable prices.
 
On August 25, 2020, shareholders of the Company and subsequently the TSX approved, a new Employee Share Purchase Plan (the "ESP Plan"). The ESP Plan allows employees and other individuals determined by the Board to be eligible to contribute a minimum of 1% and a maximum of 10% of their earnings to the ESP Plan for the purchase of common shares of NXT ("Common Shares"), of which the Company will make an equal contribution. Common Shares contributed by the Company may be issued from treasury or acquired through the facilities of the TSX. The Company began to issue Common Shares under the ESP Plan during Q4-20. The Company will also match 100% of the employee contributions of up to 10% of their earnings in the first year of the plan if the employee does not withdrawal common shares from the ESP Plan in the first year of their participation, up to $15,000 per employee. Further details on the ESP Plan can be found in the 2020 Management Information Circular, available on NXT's website at www.nxtenergy.com and on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
 
SBCE in 2020 was higher compared to 2019 by $124,607 as the RSU, DSU (both defined below) and ESP Plan were implemented during 2020.
 
SBCE in 2019 was lower compared to 2018 by $342,345. In Q1 2018, 333,333 options vested resulting in substantial SBCE. In 2019, most options previously issued by the Company had vested resulting in minimal SBCE, partially offset by 100,000 options awarded to a consultant.
 
Stock-based compensation expense (“SBCE”)
 
For the year ended December 31,
 
         
 
2020
 
 
2019
 
 
2018
 
Stock Option Expense   
 $34,223 
 $43,809 
 $386,154 
Deferred Share Units   
  15,000 
  - 
  - 
Restricted Stock Units   
  111,060 
  - 
  - 
Employee Share Purchase Plan    
  8,133 
  - 
  - 
Total SBCE Expenses        
  168,416 
  43,809 
  386,154 
 
 
Amortization Expense
 
Property and equipment and Intellectual property is recorded at cost, less accumulated amortization, which is recorded over the estimated service lives of the assets using annual rates and methods which are also subject to ongoing tests of potential impairment of the recorded net book value.
 
Amortization Expense
 
For the year ended December 31,
 
 
 
2020
 
 
2019
 
 
2018
 
Property and equipment
 $96,073 
 $96,448 
 $105,534 
Intellectual property
  1,684,733 
  1,684,733 
  1,684,733 
Total Amortization Expense
  1,780,806 
  1,781,181 
  1,790,267 
 
 
 
 
32
 
 
Property and equipment and related amortization expense. Property and equipment amortization was higher in 2019 compared to 2020 as amortization decreases each year as the Company uses the declining balance method of depreciation, thereby having the effect of lowering amortization each year on existing assets.
 
Property and equipment additions in 2019 was for acquiring and installing in its aircraft a new transponder technology known as ADS-B. The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (the "FAA") and European Aviation Safety Agency have mandated that all aircraft flying in designated controlled airspaces must be equipped with ADS-B by January 1, 2020 (US airspace) and June 7, 2020 (European airspace). Total costs for installing the ADS-B was approximately $208,000. This amortization was offset as the Company uses the declining balance method of depreciation, thereby having the effect of lowering amortization each year on existing assets. In prior years most of our capital investment in property and equipment was in computer hardware, which is amortized on a 30% declining balance basis, such that amortization is high in the initial year of capital investment. Since 2016, annual capital spending has been minimal, resulting in declining levels of amortization expense.
 
Intellectual property and related amortization expense. NXT acquired specific rights to utilize the proprietary SFD® technology in global hydrocarbon exploration applications from the inventor of the SFD® technology, NXT's Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, on August 31, 2015. The value attributed to the acquired IP assets was $25.3 million. The IP assets are amortized on a straight-line basis over a 15-year period (future amortization expense of $1,685,000 per year) and are also being subject to an ongoing assessment of potential indicators of impairment of the recorded net book value. No impairments were recognized in 2020, 2019, or 2018.
 
Other Expense (Income)
 
For the year ended December 31,
 
 
 
2020
 
 
2019
 
 
2018
 
Interest expense (income), net
 $(11,535)
 $(20,684)
 $(62,004)
Foreign exchange (gain) loss
  (76,029)
  233,231 
  (19,852)
Intellectual property, R&D and ARO
  10,402 
  56,833 
  (43,428)
Gain on extinguishment of liability
  - 
  - 
  (185,661)
 Total Other Expense (Income)
  (77,162)
  269,380 
  (310,945)
 
 
Interest (income) expense, net. This category of other expenses includes interest income earned on short-term investments netted by interest expense from lease obligations. 2020 interest (income) expense net decreased $9,149 versus 2019 as the Company had less short-term investments over comparative periods and the Company's locked in guaranteed investment certificates had overall lower average interest rates. In addition, interest from lease obligations has been reduced in 2020, as the outstanding lease obligations continues to decrease. Since January 1, 2019 interest on finance leases is included in this account under the new lease accounting standard. 2019 interest (income) expense net was $41,320 less than 2018, as lease interest expense has offset income earned on guaranteed investment certificates.
 
Foreign exchange loss (gain). This category of other expenses includes losses and gains caused by changes in the relative currency exchange values of US$ and CDN$. The Company held significant assets in US$ at December 31, 2020, including accounts receivable, cash and cash equivalents, short-term investments and the security deposit for the aircraft, all of which have an effect on the unrealized foreign exchange gain and loss. For 2020 the foreign exchange gain was the result of weakening of the CDN$ vs. the US$ from December 31, 2019 to March 31, 2020 and large US$ balances. This foreign exchange gain was reduced in the following 3 quarters as the CDN$ strengthened. Also US$ balances were slowly reduced during each period in 2020. At June 30, 2019, the Company had a significant foreign exchange loss which was the result of the CDN dollar strengthening compared with May 2019 when several of the US dollar assets were initially recorded.
 
At December 31, 2019, the Company had a significant foreign exchange loss which was the result of the CDN dollar strengthening compared to May 2019 when several of the US dollar assets were initially recorded.
 
33
 
 
The Company does not currently enter into hedging contracts, but uses strategies to reduce the volatility of US dollar assets including converting excess US dollars to CDN dollars.
 
 Intellectual property, R&D and ARO. This category includes primarily costs related to IP filings and R&D activity related to the SFD® technology and costs for certain non-recurring, "project" activities.
 
In all periods, the Company's IP and other expenses related mostly to costs associated with maintaining patents. In 2019, these expenses related mostly to costs associated with the validation process for certain European SFD® patents.
 
In 2018, the Company's Intellectual property and R&D expenses were negative as it incurred less costs from a provider of services than originally estimated. The Company also updated estimates for several asset retirement obligations related to minor non-operated interests in oil and natural gas wells in which NXT has outstanding abandonment and reclamation obligations in accordance with government regulations were significantly reduced in Q4-18.
 
Gain on Extinguishment of Liability - In Q3-18, the Company determined that liabilities it had recorded before 2005 were no longer payable. As a result, a gain of $185,661 was recorded in other income on the extinguishment of the liability. No cash was paid to settle the liability.
 
Other expenses includes primarily discretionary costs related to intellectual property / patent filings and R&D activity related to the SFD® technology.
 
We currently have no other outstanding derivative financial instruments, such as foreign currency hedges.
 
Income tax expense – There was no income tax expense in 2020, 2019 or 2018.
 
At the end of 2020, NXT has available for future Canadian income tax deduction purposes significant unrecorded deferred income tax assets, the benefit of which has not been recorded in the Company’s financial statements due to uncertainty regarding the amount and timing of their potential future utilization. These deferred income tax assets include non-capital losses carried-forward (expiring in 2027 to 2039) and other resource deductions totaling approximately $7.89 million.
 
Summary of Quarterly Results (Unaudited)
 
A summary of operating results for each of the trailing 8 quarters (including a comparison to each respective prior quarter) follows. The extent of the profit or loss each quarter is mainly due to the timing and the number of survey contracts that are underway, and variances in such non-cash items as SBCE, which can occasionally be a significant expense in any given quarter
  
 
  Q4-20 
  Q3-20 
  Q2-20 
  Q1-20 
 
  Dec 31, 2020  
  Sep 30, 2020  
  Jun 30, 2020  
  Mar 31, 2020  
 
Survey revenue
 
 $- 
 $- 
 $136,566 
 $- 
Net income (loss)
  (1,685,210)
  (1,502,456)
  (1,479,709)
  (1,332,301)
 
Income (loss) per share - basic
 
  (0.03)
  (0.02)
  (0.02)
  (0.02)
 
Income (loss) per share - diluted
 
  (0.03)
  (0.02)
  (0.02)
  (0.02)
 
 
 
Q4-19
 
 
Q3-19
 
 
Q2-19
 
 
Q1-19
 
 
 
Dec 31, 2019 
 
 
Sep 30, 2019
 
 
Jun 30, 2019
 
 
Mar 31, 2019
 
Survey revenue
 $- 
 $1,021,532 
 $10,954,617 
 $- 
Net income (loss)
  (1,775,287)
  (774,373)
  8,085,888 
  (1,763,320)
Income (loss) per share - basic
  (0.03)
  (0.01)
  0.12 
  (0.03)
Income (loss) per share - diluted
  (0.03)
  (0.01)
  0.11 
  (0.03)
 
 
34
 
 
Significant or Unusual Items Impacting Net Income (Loss):
 
During Q4-20 the Company received the CEWS and the CERS which reduced costs. In Q3-20 the Company received the CEWS and the SR&ED which also reduced costs. During Q2-20, revenue was earned on the recognition of the forfeited deposit from AGV, payable pursuant to the Co-operation Agreement. In Q2-19 and Q3-19, revenues were earned from the Nigerian SFD® Survey. There were no revenues in the other five quarters. Excluding Q2-19 and Q3-19, the Company incurred net losses in each of the other quarters primarily due to incurred survey costs (related to aircraft lease and aircraft maintenance costs), G&A expenses and non-cash items like SBCE, which can be a significant expense in any given quarter. More specific details are provided below:
 
in Q4-20, costs were reduced primarily due to receiving the CEWS and the CERS, and reduced travel;
 
in Q3-20, costs were reduced primarily due to receiving the CEWS and the SR&ED, and reduced travel;
 
in Q2-20, revenue was earned on the recognition of the forfeited deposit from AGV, payable pursuant to the Co-Operation Agreement, and the Company incurred a $135,991 foreign exchange loss partially offsetting the Q1-20 foreign exchange gain described below;
 
in Q1-20, the Company incurred a $409,517 foreign exchange gain as it held significant monetary assets in US dollars at March 31, 2020, including accounts receivable, cash and cash equivalents, short-term investments and the security deposit for the aircraft, and the CDN$ devalued by approximately 9%;
 
in Q4-19, survey costs were higher as final integration costs from the Nigerian SFD® Survey were incurred;
 
in Q3-19, NXT recognized $1,021,532 of revenue for services rendered in connection with the Nigerian SFD® Survey, compared to $10,954,618 in Q2-19; and
 
in Q1-19, survey costs were higher due to scheduled maintenance on the aircraft and significant legal and contract negation costs in preparing for the Nigerian SFD® Survey.
 
B.            
Liquidity and capital resources.
 
Going Concern
 
The consolidated financial statements for 2020 have been prepared on a going concern basis.  The going concern basis of presentation assumes that NXT will continue in operation for the foreseeable future and will be able to realize its assets and discharge its liabilities and commitments in the normal course of business. 
 
The events described in the following paragraphs highlight that there is substantial doubt about NXT's ability to continue as a going concern within one year after the date that this 20F has been issued.
 
The Company's current cash position is not expected to be sufficient to meet the Company's obligations and planned operations for the 12 month period beyond the date that these financial statements have been issued.
 
The Company is taking further steps to reduce operating costs including payroll and other G&A costs and is evaluating alternatives to reduce other costs. If required, further financing options that may or may not be available to the Company include issuance of new equity, debentures or bank credit facilities.  The need for any of these options will be dependent on the timing of securing new SFD® survey contracts and obtaining financing on terms that are acceptable to both the Company and the financier.
 
NXT continues to develop its pipeline of opportunities to secure new revenue contracts. However, the Company's longer-term success remains dependent upon its ability convert these opportunities into successful SFD® survey contracts to continue to attract new client projects ultimately to expand the revenue base to a level sufficient to exceed fixed operating costs and generate positive cash flow from operations.  The occurrence and timing of these events cannot be predicted with certainty.
 
35
 
 
The consolidated financial statements do not reflect adjustments that would be necessary if the going concern basis was not appropriate.  If the going concern basis were not appropriate for these consolidated financial statements, then adjustments would be necessary in the carrying value of the assets and liabilities, the reported revenues and expenses and the balance sheet classifications used. These adjustments could be material.
 
NXT's cash and cash equivalents plus short-term investments at December 31, 2020 totaled $3.03 million. Net working capital (see Non-GAAP Measure discussion below) totaled $2.73 million.
 
Risks related to having sufficient ongoing net working capital to execute survey project contracts are mitigated through our normal practice of obtaining advance payments and progress payments from customers throughout the course of the projects, which often span three to four months. In addition, where possible, risk of default on client billings has been mitigated through the use of export insurance programs offered by Export Development Canada.
 
The Company does not have provisions in its leases, contracts, or other arrangements that would trigger additional funding requirements or early payments except that if the Company were to default on its office lease, the current month rent plus the next three months become immediately due. If the Company were to default on the aircraft lease, the Company would be required to deliver the aircraft back to the Lessor.
 
Non-GAAP Measure: This discussion includes references to the term “net working capital”, which does not have a standardized meaning prescribed by U.S. GAAP and may not be comparable to similar measures presented by other entities.  NXT management uses this non-GAAP measure to improve our ability to assess liquidity at a point in time.  Net working capital is defined as total current assets less total current liabilities, excluding amounts accumulated in work in progress and deferred revenue.  Management excludes these amounts from the calculation as they do not represent future cash inflows or outflows to the Company.
 
NXT had no secured debt and had net working capital of $2,732,977 as at December 31, 2020 as follows:
 
  
 
December 31,
 
 
December 31,
 
 
 net change
 
 
 
2020
 
 
2019
 
 
in 2020
 
Current assets (current liabilities):
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Cash and cash equivalents
 $2,690,146 
 $2,858,245 
 $(168,099)
Short-term investments
  341,261 
  3,781,512 
  (3,440,251)
 
  3,031,407 
  6,639,757 
  (3,608,350)
Accounts receivable
  965,548 
  1,384,315 
  (418,767)
Note receivable
  - 
  324,700 
  (324,700)
Prepaid expenses and deposits
  77,532 
  97,132 
  (19,600)
Accounts payable and accrued liabilities
  (440,538)
  (448,928)
  8,390 
Contract obligations
  (127,507)
  (131,386)
  3,879 
Current portion of capital lease obligation
  (773,465)
  (736,408)
  (37,057)
Net Working Capital
  2,732,977 
  7,129,182 
  (4,396,205)
 
The decrease in net working capital at December 31, 2020 versus December 31, 2019 was due to cash used in operating activities.
 
Sources and uses of cash
 
The overall net changes in cash balances in each of the periods noted above is a function of several factors including any inflows (outflows) due to changes in net working capital balances and net of any cash transferred into/out of short-term investments. Further information on the net changes in cash, by each of the operating, financing and investing activities, at the end of the periods, for the last three fiscal years is as follows:
 
 
36
 
 
For the year ended December 31
 
2020
 
 
2019
 
 
2018
 
Cash provided by (used in):
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Operating activities
 $(3,452,925)
 $4,052,406 
 $(6,068,831)
Financing activities
  (34,923)
  (1,385,787)
  9,176,839 
Investing activities
  3,436,691 
  (173,927)
  (2,960,006)
Effect of foreign rate changes on cash
  (116,942)
  26,021 
  24,912 
Net cash inflow (outflow)
  (168,099)
  2,518,713 
  172,914 
Cash & cash equivalents, start of the year
  2,858,245 
  339,532 
  166,618 
Cash & cash equivalents, end of the year
  2,690,146 
  2,858,245 
  339,532 
 
    
    
    
Cash & cash equivalents
  2,690,146 
  2,858,245 
  339,532 
Short-term investments
  341,261 
  3,781,512 
  3,900,000 
Total
  3,031,407 
  6,639,757 
  4,239,532 
 
Operating Activities
 
Net cash flow from operating activities listed above is a function of net income (loss) for the year, an add back of the net non-cash revenue and expense items (such as SBCE, amortization expense, deferred tax expense / (recovery) and the net change in year-end working capital items (for example, a net decrease in working capital in the year gives rise to a source of cash), with these components each year as follows:
 
For the year ended December 31,
 
2020
 
 
2019
 
 
2018
 
Comprehensive income (loss) for the year
 $(5,999,675)
 $3,772,908 
 $(6,968,511)
Total non-cash expense items and ARO liabilities settled
  1,920,981 
  1,751,559 
  1,757,850 
 
  (4,078,694)
  5,524,467 
  (5,210,661)
Change in non-cash working capital balances
  625,769 
  (1,472,061)
  (858,170)
Total cash provided by (used in) in operations
  (3,452,925)
  4,052,406 
  (6,068,831)
 
Operating cash flow decreased by $7,505,331 in 2020 as compared to 2019 because of the milestone payments received from the Nigerian SFD® Survey during 2019.
 
Operating cash flow increased by $10,122,347 in 2019 as compared to 2018 because of payments received from the Nigerian SFD® Survey net of payments for survey costs.
 
Financing Activities
 
2020 – In 2020, the financing activity was for employee contributions under the ESP Plan. Financing payments in 2020 were for payments on the finance lease for office equipment. In Q2-20, the Company terminated the finance lease for office equipment with a final payment of approximately $20,000.
 
2019 – During the fourth quarter of 2019 the Company completed the TIB for $1,250,000 plus costs of $93,184 to repurchase 4,166,667 TIB Common Shares, at a price of $0.30 per. Also NXT recorded a net cash financing outflow of $42,603 in 2019 on payments for its finance leases.
 
2018 – During 2018 NXT recorded a net inflow of $9,176,839 as a result of proceeds received from the closing of tranches in the Private Placement.
 
 
37
 
 
Investing Activities
 
2020 – Short-term investments decreased in 2020 as the Company used investments in Guaranteed Investment Certificates to fund operations.
 
2019 – Company acquired the new transponder technology known as ADS-B for its aircraft. Total costs for installing the ADS-B was approximately $208,000. Short-term investments in 2019 increased as the Company invested excess funds from operations into guaranteed investment certificates.
 
2018 – Short-term investments increased as a result of the Private Placement funds.
 
C.            
Research and development, patents and licenses, etc.
 
Research and development ("R&D") expenditures incurred to develop, improve and test the SFD® survey system and related components are expensed as incurred. Any intellectual property that is acquired for the purpose of enhancing research and development projects, if there is no alternative use for the intellectual property, is expensed in the period acquired. No significant external R&D was incurred in the years ended 2020, 2019 and 2018.
 
Research and development, patents and licenses for NXT primarily includes costs related to intellectual property filings, research and development activity related to the SFD® technology and certain non-recurring project activities.
 
D.            
Trend information.
 
We have historically conducted a limited number of service contracts each year, the dollar value and timing of securing and ultimate delivery of which are subject to numerous external factors.
 
As noted previously, the amount and timing of our annual revenues can vary widely year to year, as we derive our revenues from a limited number of service contracts each year and each individual contract may have a large effect on the aggregate annual revenues and profits. For example, in 2012, we conducted our first contract with PEMEX, the National Oil Company of Mexico. This project was completed in 2012 and was our largest to that time, at US$5.8 million. In 2015, projects totaling US$13 million were completed in Bolivia for YPFB, then our next survey in Nigeria during 2019 was for US$8.9 million. At the date of this 20-F current external trends such as in commodity prices and Covid-19 could affect our operations for the current fiscal year. Please see Item 3 D for a discussion on these risks.
 
E.            
Off-balance sheet arrangements.
 
The Company has no off-balance sheet arrangements as of the date of this 20-F other than office premise non-lease operating costs with Interloq Capital (the "Landlord"). If the Company were to default on its office lease the current month rent including operation costs plus the next three months become immediately due. Operating cost amounts are disclosed under the heading "Tabular disclosure of contractual commitments". NXT pays an estimated operating cost during the current year, but has the obligation to pay the actual operating costs incurred as defined in the office lease with the Landlord early in the first quarter of the preceding year if the estimate was low, or will receive a refund if the estimate was too high. Currently, the Company believes that the current operating cost estimate is reasonable and is constant with discussions with the Landlord.
 
 
 
38
 
 
F.            
Tabular disclosure of contractual obligations.
 
The following table sets forth our outstanding contractual obligations as at December 31, 2020:
 
 
 
 
 
 
less than
 
 
1 to 3
 
 
3 to 5
 
 
more than
 
 
 
Total
 
 
1 year
 
 
years
 
 
years
 
 
5 years
 
Long-term debt
 $- 
 $- 
 $- 
 $- 
 $- 
Lease obligations:
    
    
    
    
    
     Premises rent
  1,744,129 
  367,185 
  734,370 
  642,574 
  - 
Premises operating costs
  1,083,433 
  228,091 
  456,182 
  399,160 
  - 
Aircraft Lease
  1,409,578 
  646,204 
  763,374 
  - 
  - 
Office equipment
  10,350 
  5,400 
  4,950 
  - 
  - 
Purchase obligations
  - 
  - 
  - 
  - 
  - 
Other long term liabilities:
    
    
    
    
    
Asset retirement obligation
  22,741 
  - 
  22,741 
  - 
  - 
Total
  4,270,231 
  1,246,880 
  1,981,617 
  1,041,734 
  - 
 
 
G.            
Safe Harbor.
 
The Company seeks safe harbor for our forward-looking statements. Please see the section titled “Forward-Looking Statements” above.
 
 
ITEM 6. 
DIRECTORS, SENIOR MANAGEMENT AND EMPLOYEES
 
A.            
Directors and senior management.
 
Our articles of incorporation provide for a minimum of one director and a maximum of 15 directors comprising our Board. At present, our Board consists of six members.
 
Our directors are elected by our shareholders at our annual meeting of shareholders and hold the position either until the next annual shareholders’ meeting, the date of their resignation or until a successor is appointed.
 
 
 
39
 
 
The following sets forth information, including directorships in other reporting issuers, as of April 30, 2021, for our directors, and executive officers:
 
  
George Liszicasz
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
 
Director, Chairman and Chief
Executive Officer since January
1996; President since July 2002
Mr. Liszicasz is the inventor of the SFD® technology and has been Chairman and CEO since the Company's inception in 1996. Mr. Liszicasz's primary responsibilities as the President and CEO of the Company are to oversee all operations and to further develop the SFD® technology.
 
Mr. Liszicasz obtained a degree in Electronic Engineering from the Landler Jeno Technitken in Hungary in 1973 and studied general sciences at the University of British Columbia between 1979 and 1983. Mr. Liszicasz has done extensive research with various technologies, developing 52 inventions.
 
Charles Selby
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Director since
January 2006
Mr. Selby obtained a Bachelor of Science (Hons) degree in Chemical Engineering from Queen’s University, a Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Calgary, and is a registered Professional Engineer in the Province of Alberta.  He previously practiced law for two large Canadian law firms, specializing in securities, international transactions in the energy business and corporate finance matters.  Since leaving the practice of law, Mr. Selby served as Vice President of Pengrowth Corporation, the Administrator of Pengrowth Energy Trust, for almost 20 years.  He also has served as a director and officer of a number of reporting issuers including Arakis Energy Corp., which had operations in the Sudan, and other issuers in the oil and natural gas industry. He is currently the President and a Director of Wildcat Royalty Corporation since 2010. He is also currently President and Director of Caledonian Midstream Corporation, a company that holds a natural gas plant and associated producing assets in Alberta.
 
Mr. Selby is the Lead Director of NXT.  He is also Chair of the Compensation Committee and a member of the Audit Committee, the Disclosure Committee, and the Strategic Planning Committee.
 
Mr. Selby also served as the Company's Interim Chief Financial Officer from December, 2017 to January, 2018. 
 
John Tilson
Montecito, California, USA
 
Director since February 2015
After obtaining his Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Southern California and his Chartered Financial Analyst designation, Mr. Tilson had a distinguished career as an analyst, portfolio manager, and advisor in the US investment and financial industry with firms such as Sutro & Company and EF Hutton & Company. Mr. Tilson joined Roger Engemann & Associates, Inc. in 1983 when assets under management were roughly US$160 million. During his tenure there, the Pasadena Group of Mutual Funds was started, with Pasadena Capital Corporation formed as the holding company for the mutual funds and investment management business. After working as an Analyst and Portfolio Manager, Mr. Tilson later became Executive Vice President & Managing Director of Pasadena Capital Corporation. Assets under management had grown to over US$5 billion by the time the firm was sold to Phoenix Companies in 1997. Mr. Tilson later retired in 2005.
 
From 2006 to 2012, Mr. Tilson was a member of the Board of Trustees, including three years serving as VP and Chairman of the Long-Range Planning Committee for Lotusland, a Santa Barbara non-profit organization established by Madame Ganna Walska.
 
Mr. Tilson is the Chair of the Strategic Planning Committee, and a member of the Compensation Committee, the Governance Committee and the Audit Committee.
 
Thomas E. Valentine
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Director since November 2007
Corporate Secretary since April 2014
Mr. Valentine is a Partner with Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP, where he has practiced law, both as a barrister and a solicitor, since being admitted to the Law Society of Alberta in 1987. He is a member of the firm's Energy and Infrastructure Practice Group and is involved in energy-related matters throughout the Middle East, North Africa, the Commonwealth of Independent States, Asia and South America.
 
Mr. Valentine is a member of the Board of Directors of Touchstone Exploration Inc., and formerly was a director of two other Canadian public companies, Calvalley Petroleum Inc. (to May 2015) and Veraz Petroleum Ltd. (to December 2012).
 
Mr. Valentine holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of British Columbia, a Bachelor of Laws degree from Dalhousie University, and a Master of Laws degree from the London School of Economics.
 
Mr. Valentine is the Chair of the Governance Committee and a member of the Compensation Committee.
 
Bruce G. Wilcox
New York, New York, USA
Director since June 2015
 
 
 
Mr. Wilcox has had a long career as an investment company CEO, analyst and portfolio manager. He spent most of his career with Cumberland Associates, LLC, a New York equity fund, from 1986 through retirement in 2010, progressing from analyst / portfolio manager to partner (1989), and Chairman of the Management Committee (1997). Mr. Wilcox specialized in Cumberland's investments in the energy industry (E&P and service companies), with an emphasis on value and long-term holdings. During his tenure, the fund's assets under management ranged from US$0.7 billion to $1.5 billion.
 
From 1984 to 1986, Mr. Wilcox was with Central National-Gottesman, Inc. as an analyst and portfolio manager on a team responsible for a $500 million listed equity portfolio.
 
Mr. Wilcox is presently CEO of E Street Management, LLC (since 2016) which managed a long/short equity fund of funds. The E Street Fund ceased operations on December 31, 2020 to allow the principals to pursue other opportunities.
 
From January 2011 to present he has also been one of three managing members of Xiling Fund III, LLC, part of a series of private equity funds (US$100+ million) which specialize in investing in museum quality Chinese art and collectibles.
 
Mr. Wilcox obtained a BA (Honors), in Modern Chinese from the University of California, Santa Barbara (1977), and a Master of International Management from the American Graduate School of International Management in Phoenix (1980).
 
Mr. Wilcox is a member of several Boards, including the Teachers College of Colombia University (2003 to date, including acting as the Chair of the Investment Committee), the University of California Santa Barbara Foundation (2003 to date, including as former Chair of the Board, Investment and Finance Committees), and is a Trustee (2001 to date) of the Manhattan Institute For Policy Research, a leading urban, state, and national policy institution, which works on matters such as energy policy.
 
Mr. Wilcox is the chair of the NXT Board's Audit Committee and a member of the Disclosure, Governance and Strategic Planning Committees.
 
 
40
 
 
Frank Ingriselli
Danville, California, USA
 
Director since September 2019
 
Mr. Ingriselli has over 42 years of experience in the energy industry, Mr. Ingriselli is a seasoned leader and entrepreneur with wide-ranging energy industry experience in diverse geographies, business climates and political environments.
 
From 1979 to 2001, Mr. Ingriselli worked at Texaco in a variety of senior executive positions involving exploration and production, power and gas operations, merger and acquisition activities, pipeline operations and corporate development.  While at Texaco, Mr. Ingriselli held the position of President of Texaco Technology Ventures, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Timan Pechora Company (owned by affiliates of Texaco, Exxon, Amoco, Norsk Hydro and Lukoil), and President of Texaco International Operations where he directed Texaco's global initiatives in exploration and development.  During his tenure, Mr. Ingriselli, also led Texaco's initiatives in exploration and development in China, Russia, Australia, India, Venezuela and many other countries.
 
From 2005 to 2018, Mr. Ingriselli was the founder, President, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of PEDEVCO Corp. and Pacific Asia Petroleum, Inc., both energy companies which are or were listed on the New York or American stock exchanges.  From 2016 through 2019, Mr. Ingriselli was the founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of Blackhawk Energy Ventures Inc. which endeavored to acquire oil and gas assets in the United States for development purposes.
 
Currently, Mr. Ingriselli is the President of Indonesia Energy Corporation (NYSE:INDO). Mr. Ingriselli serves on the Board of Trustees of the Eurasia Foundation, and is the founder and Chairman of Brightening Lives Foundation, Inc., a US Section 501(c)(3) public charitable foundation.
Mr. Ingriselli obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Boston University, a Master of Business Administration degree in both finance and international finance from New York University and a Juris Doctorate degree from Fordham University School of Law.
 
Mr. Ingriselli is a member of the Audit Committee.
 
Eugene Woychyshyn
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
VP Finance and CFO since December 2018
Mr. Woychyshyn brings to NXT over 25 years of leadership experience in multiple industries and worldwide regions including North America, Europe and Asia. Mr. Woychyshyn has extensive hands-on experience and accomplishments in mergers and acquisitions, organizational restructuring, purchasing, treasury, financial reporting and control, compliance, human resource management and tax planning. In almost ten years as an expatriate with assignments in Norway, China, the United States and South East Asia, Mr. Woychyshyn developed international business competencies.
 
Mr. Woychyshyn originally served as a consultant to NXT from November 2017 to November 2018, providing controllership services. From 2015 to 2017 he as the Chief Financial Officer of Imaging Dynamics Company Limited.
 
Mr. Woychyshyn is a Chartered Professional Accountant, CA, who holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons) degree from the University of Manitoba and a Masters of Business Administration degree from St. Joseph's University, Philadelphia PA.
 
Mr. Woychyshyn is a member of the Disclosure Committee.
 
None of the directors or executive officers is, or has been in the last ten years, a director, chief executive officer or chief financial officer of any company that: (i) was subject to a cease trade or similar order or an order that denied the relevant company access to any exemption under securities legislation for a period of more than 30 consecutive days that was issued while the director was acting in that capacity; (ii) was subject to such an order that was issued after the proposed director ceased to be a director, chief executive officer or chief financial officer and which resulted from an event that occurred while that person was acting in such a capacity.
 
None of the directors or executive officers is, or has been in the last ten years, a director or executive officer of any company that, while that person was acting in that capacity, or within a year of that person ceasing to act in that capacity, became bankrupt, made a proposal under any legislation relating to bankruptcy or insolvency or was subject to or instituted any proceedings, arrangement or compromise with creditors or had a receiver, receiver manager or trustee appointed to hold its assets, other than as discussed below.
 
None of the directors or executive officers has, within the last ten years, become bankrupt, made a proposal under any legislation relating to bankruptcy or insolvency, or become subject to or instituted any proceedings, arrangement or compromise with creditors or had a receiver, receiver manager or trustee appointed to hold their assets.
 
Messrs. Tilson, Valentine, Selby, Ingriselli, and Wilcox are considered "independent" within the meaning of Canadian securities law.
 
 
41
 
 
B.            
Compensation
 
Executive Compensation
 
The following table sets out certain information regarding the annual and long-term compensation of the Chief Executive Officer, the Chief Financial Officer at December 31, 2020, as well as any additional individuals for whom disclosure would have been provided pursuant to the above criteria except that the individual was not serving as an officer of the Company at the end of 2020. All officers of the Company are based in the Calgary, Canada head office and are paid in Canadian dollars.
 
Summary compensation table for the year ended December 31, 2020:
 
Name & Principal Position
 
Salary 
 
 
Share-based rewards(1)
 
 
 Vacation (2)
 
 
Other (3)
 
 
 Total
 
George Liszicasz, President & CEO (4)
 $274,800 
 $74,330 
 $40,163 
 $12,000 
 $401,293 
Eugene Woychyshyn, VP of Finance & Chief Financial Officer
 $180,000 
 $59,250 
 $15,574 
 $1,382 
 $256,206 
 
(1) The Share-based rewards represents the Company match to the executive’s contribution to the ESP Plan and RSU grants.
(2) “Vacation” represents a cash payout in the year of a portion of unused vacation entitlements carried forward.
(3) “Other” consists of any vehicle allowance paid ($9,000 for Mr. Liszicasz) plus the taxable portion of company paid amounts for group health benefits.
(4) Salary and other totals exclude the cash portion of fees earned as Board Members, $35,000 for Mr. Liszicasz.
(See Item 6.E “Share Ownership” for details regarding stock options, DSUs, RSUs, both defined below, and ESP Plan shares granted to officers).
 
No amount is set aside or accrued by the Company or its subsidiaries to provide pension, retirement or similar benefits to officers or directors.
 
Director Compensation
 
NXT compensates directors for serving on our Board by paying a combination of an annual cash retainer as well granting stock options to purchase NXT common shares. New members who join the Board receive a separate grant of stock options (with entitlement to exercise vesting over a 3 year period) in the year of joining the Board. No options were granted to Board members.
 
In 2020, the directors, other than Mr. Selby, each individually elected to receive cash as payment of Board fees earned for the year. Mr. Selby elected to receive one half of his retainer in cash and one half in deferred stock units. The annual cash retainer was based on $30,000 ($35,000 in the case of each of the Chairman of the Board and the Audit Committee.) Compensation payable (including pro-rated amounts for periods of partial service in the year) for 2020 is summarized as follows:
 
 
 
 2020
 
George Liszicasz
 $35,000 
Charles Selby
  30,000 
Bruce G. Wilcox
  35,000 
Tom Valentine
  30,000 
John Tilson
  30,000 
Frank Ingriselli
  30,000 
 
The amount and terms of any stock options granted as compensation for Board member services is determined by the Board. We do not provide additional compensation for committee participation (other than as noted previously regarding the minor additional amount for service as the Chairman of the Board and of the Audit Committee) or for special assignments of the Board. (See Item 6.E “Share ownership” for details regarding stock options and DSUs granted to directors.)
 
42
 
 
The Company reimburses directors for out-of-pocket expenses for attending Board and committee meetings. We do not provide termination benefits for directors.
 
C.            
Board practices.
 
Expiration Dates
 
No director or member of our administrative, or supervisory bodies has an expiration date for their current term of office. Directors are elected by shareholders at the annual meeting of shareholders and hold the position either until the next annual shareholders’ meeting or until a successor is appointed. The period during which each individual has served as a director is set out in the table under Item 6.A – “Directors and senior management”.
 
Service Contracts
 
No directors (other than an employment contract for the CEO, Mr. Liszicasz) have service contracts with the Company or any of its subsidiaries that provide benefits upon termination of employment.
 
Board of Directors Mandate
 
The principal role of the Board is stewardship of the Company through the creation of shareholder value, including the protection and enhancement of the value of its assets, as the fundamental objective. The stewardship responsibility means that the Board oversees the general operation of the business and management, which is responsible for the day-to-day conduct of the business. The Board must assess and ensure systems are in place to manage the risks of the Company’s business with the objective of preserving the Company’s assets. The Board, through the CEO, sets the attitude and disposition of the Company towards compliance with applicable laws, environmental, safety and health policies, financial practices and reporting. In addition to its primary accountability to shareholders, the Board is also accountable to employees, government authorities, other stakeholders and the public. The Mandate of the Board is posted on the Company website and may viewed at www.nxtenergy.com or you may request a copy be mailed to you by writing to our offices at Suite 302, 3320 - 17th Avenue SW Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T3E 0B4.
 
Board Committees
 
CORPORATE GOVERNANCE COMMITTEE
 
The Company and the Board recognize the importance of corporate governance to the effective management of the Company and to its shareholders. The Company’s approach to significant issues of corporate governance is designed with a view to ensuring that the business and affairs of the Company are effectively managed so as to enhance shareholder value. The Mandate of the Corporate Governance Committee is posted on the Company website and may be viewed at www.nxtenergy.com or you may request a copy be mailed to you by writing to our offices at Suite 302, 3320 - 17th Avenue SW Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T3E 0B4.
 
The Board and management endorse the need to establish forward-looking governance policies and to continuously evaluate and modify them to ensure their effectiveness.
 
Composition of the Corporate Governance Committee
 
Messrs. Valentine (Chair), Wilcox and Tilson are the current members of the Corporate Governance Committee. All members of the Corporate Governance Committee are independent within the meaning of Canadian National Instrument 58-101.
 
Responsibilities of the Corporate Governance Committee
 
The Corporate Governance Committee’s duties, as outlined in its charter, are to deal with the Company’s approach to corporate governance and the promotion of compliance with industry and regulatory standards. The committee is responsible for overseeing and assessing the functioning of the Board and the committees of the Board and for the development, recommendation to the Board, implementation and assessment of effective corporate governance principles and guidelines. The Committee’s responsibilities also include identifying new candidates for director and recommending that the Board select qualified director candidates for election at the next annual meeting of shareholders.
 
 
43
 
 
DISCLOSURE COMMITTEE
 
Composition of the Disclosure Committee
 
The Disclosure Committee currently consists of Mr. Selby, Mr. Wilcox (Chair) and Mr. Woychyshyn (VP of Finance & CFO of the Company).
 
Responsibilities of the Disclosure Committee
 
The Disclosure Committee’s duties are to ensure that the Company provides timely, accurate and balanced disclosure of all material information about the Company and to provide fair and equal access to such information. All news releases, including but not limited to releases of material information, are managed by the Disclosure Committee. If the information has been determined by the Disclosure Committee to be material, news releases will be prepared, reviewed and then disseminated through a news-wire service that provides simultaneous service to widespread news services and financial media. Additionally, the Disclosure Committee is responsible for ensuring public disclosure through filing these news releases on SEDAR, EDGAR, and our website.
 
STRATEGIC PLANNING COMMITTEE
 
Composition of the Strategic Planning Committee
 
Messrs. Tilson (Chair), Wilcox and Selby are the current members of the Strategic Planning Committee. All members of the Strategic Planning Committee are independent within the meaning of Canadian National Instrument 58-101.
 
 Responsibilities of the Strategic Planning Committee
 
The Strategic Planning Committee's duties are to set out the long-term goals of the Company and to take an active role in the development and execution of plans to achieve those goals. The Committee participates in establishing priority areas of Company business, assessment of strategic initiatives from Company senior executives with regard to development and implementation control of the Company Strategy and business area specific strategies of the Company. The Committee also makes recommendations regarding the overall organization and management structure including areas where management needs to be strengthened, reviewing the organizational job descriptions, requirements and also procedures for coordination of organizational management and board resources. The Committee is actively involved in the Company’s strategic planning process and reviews all materials relating to the strategic plan with management. The Board is responsible for reviewing and approving the strategic plan. At least one board meeting each year is centered on discussing and considering the strategic plan, which takes into account the risks and opportunities of the business. Management must seek the Board’s approval for any transaction that would have a significant impact on the strategic plan.
 
AUDIT COMMITTEE
 
Composition of the Audit Committee
 
The Audit Committee consists of Messrs. Wilcox (Chair), Selby, Ingriselli, and Tilson. All members of the Audit Committee are independent within the meaning of Canadian National Instrument 58-101 and each member is financially literate. The Company’s Audit Committee Charter is posted on our website and may be viewed at www.nxtenergy.com or you may request a copy be mailed to you by writing to our offices at Suite 302, 3320 – 17th Avenue SW, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T3E 0B4.
 
Bruce G. Wilcox
 
Mr. Wilcox holds a Master of International Management from the American Graduate School of International Management in Phoenix. His career as an investment company CEO, analyst and portfolio manager was spent primarily with Cumberland Associates, LLC, and a New York equity fund, where he was a partner, and served as Chairman of the Managing Committee. He has previously served as audit committee chair of a publicly traded company.
 
 
 
44
 
 
Charles Selby
 
Mr. Selby is both a lawyer and Professional Engineer, with past legal experience specializing in securities and corporate finance matters.  He has served on the board or in senior management roles with a number of private firms as well as reporting issuers in the oil and natural gas industry. 
 
Mr. Selby has previously served on the audit committees of Alta Canada Energy Corp. and served as the audit committee chairman for Idaho Natural Resources Corp. (formerly Bridge Resources Corp.). Mr. Selby also served as the Company's Interim Chief Financial Officer from December , 2017 to January , 2018.
 
John Tilson
 
Mr. Tilson is retired, and after obtaining MBA and CFA designations, had a distinguished career as an analyst, portfolio manager, and advisor in the US investment and financial industry with such firms as Sutro & Company and EF Hutton & Company.
 
Frank Ingriselli
 
Mr. Ingriselli graduated from Boston University with a B.S. in business administration. He also earned an M.B.A. from New York University in both finance and international finance and a J.D. from Fordham University School of Law.
 
 
All members of the Audit Committee have the educational background and experience that provides them with the knowledge and ability to understand accounting policies and related financial reporting and disclosure issues, in order to fulfill their duties and responsibilities as an Audit Committee member.
 
Audit Committee Oversight - The Company’s Board has adopted all recommendations by the Audit Committee with respect to the nomination and compensation of the external auditor.
 
Pre-Approval Policies and Procedures - The Audit Committee has adopted a formal policy requiring the pre-approval of all audit and non-audit related services to be provided by the Company’s principal auditor prior to the commencement of the engagement, subject to the following:
 
the Audit Committee will review annually a list of audit, audit related, recurring tax and other non-audit services and recommend pre-approval of those services for the upcoming year. Any additional requests will be addressed on a case-by-case specific engagement basis;
 
for engagements not on the pre-approved list, the Audit Committee has delegated to the Chair of the Committee the authority to pre-approve individual non-audit service engagements with expected costs of up to $50,000 (annual aggregate total) subject to reporting to the Audit Committee, at its next scheduled meeting; and
 
for engagements not on the pre-approved list and with expected costs greater than $50,000 (annual aggregate total), the entire Audit Committee must approve this service, generally at its next scheduled meeting.
 
 
COMPENSATION COMMITTEE
 
Composition of the Compensation Committee
 
Messrs. Selby (Chair), and Tilson and Valentine are members of the Compensation Committee. All members of the Compensation Committee are independent within the meaning of Canadian National Instrument 58-101. The charter or mandate of the Compensation Committee is posted on the Company website and may viewed at www.nxtenergy.com or you may request a copy be mailed to you by writing to our offices at 302, 3320 – 17th Avenue SW, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T3E 0B4.
 
 
 
45
 
 
Responsibilities of the Compensation Committee
 
The Compensation Committee's duties, as outlined in its charter, are to deal with the assessment of management and succession to key positions and compensation within the Company. The Compensation Committee shall assist the Board in discharging the Board’s oversight responsibilities relating to the compensation and retention of key senior management employees, and in particular the CEO, with the skills and expertise needed to enable the Company to achieve its goals and strategies at fair and competitive compensation and appropriate performance incentives. In discharging its responsibilities, the Compensation Committee will report and where appropriate, make recommendations to the Board in respect of the matters identified in the charter.
 
D.            
Employees
 
Fiscal year ended December 31, 2020
 
As of the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020, we had a total of 10 employees. NXT has no employees that are members of a labor union. The following summarizes the number of employees and independent contractors by main job function as at December 31, 2020:
 
 
Functionemployeescontractorstotal
Senior management team2-2
Finance, administration and sales3-3
Operations and technical development6-6
Total11-11
 
 
Ten of the above noted staff are based in Calgary, Canada and one in Toronto, Canada. The 6 operations and technical development staff includes one research scientist holding a Ph.D. and 3 geoscientists. We periodically engage other technical and administrative contract personnel as required on a project basis.
 
Fiscal year ended December 31, 2019
 
As of the fiscal year ended December 31, 2019, we had a total of 10 employees. NXT has no employees that are members of a labor union. The following summarizes the number of employees and independent contractors by main job function as at December 31, 2019:
 
 
Functionemployeescontractorstotal
Senior management team2-2
Finance, administration and sales2-2
Operations and technical development6-6
Total10-10
 
 
All of the above noted staff were based in Calgary, Canada. The 6 operations and technical development staff includes one research scientist holding a Ph.D. and 3 geoscientists. We periodically engage other technical and administrative contract personnel as required on a project basis.
 
 
 
46
 
 
Fiscal year ended December 31, 2018
 
As at December 31, 2018, we had a staff of 11, all based in Calgary, as follows:
 
Functionemployeescontractorstotal
Senior management team2-2
Finance, administration and sales3-3
Operations and technical development6-6
Total11-11
 
 
All of the above noted staff were based in Calgary, Canada. The 6 operations and technical development staff included one research scientist holding a Ph.D. and 3 geoscientists.
 
E.            
Share ownership.
 
Information on the ownership of our common shares is given under Item 7, Major Shareholders and Related Party Transactions.
 
Summary of Stock Options, Restricted Share Units and Stock Appreciation Rights Granted To Executive Officers and Directors
 
All stock options have been granted pursuant to the Stock Option Plan (the “Plan”) of the Company or predecessor plans with substantially the same terms. The Plan is approved and ratified by shareholders every three years at the Company’s annual general meeting (“AGM”). The Plan, as was re-approved and ratified at the Company’s AGM held on June 25, 2019. Pursuant to this Plan, all stock option grants must be approved by the Board. Stock options may be granted to the directors, officers and employees of NXT and two consultants retained by the Company. The aggregate number of common shares reserved for issuance under this Plan, and any other plan of the Company, shall not, at the time of the stock option grant, exceed ten percent of the total number of issued and outstanding shares (calculated on a non-diluted basis) unless the Company receives the permission of the stock exchange or exchanges on which the shares are then listed to exceed such threshold. No stock option shall be exercisable for a period exceeding five (5) years from the date the stock option is granted unless the Company receives the permission of the stock exchange or exchanges on which the shares are then listed and as specifically provided by the Board and as permitted under the rules of any stock exchange or exchanges on which the shares are then listed, and in any event, no stock option shall be exercisable for a period exceeding ten (10) years from the date the option is granted.
 
Stock options are generally issued with a three year vesting period wherein entitlement to exercise one third of the options granted shall vest at the end of each of the first three years following the grant date. The exercise price for an option grant is set at the last trade price on the date preceding the grant or some higher price at the discretion of the Board.
 
The Restricted Share Unit Plan (the ”RSU”) is approved and ratified by shareholders every three years at the Company’s AGM. The RSU, as was re-approved and ratified at the Company’s AGM held on August 25, 2020. Pursuant to the RSU, all grants must be approved by the Board of the Company. RSU’s may be granted to the directors, officers and employees of NXT and to consultants retained by the Company. The aggregate number of common shares reserved for issuance under this Plan, and any other plan of the Company, shall not, at the time of the RSU grant, exceed ten percent of the total number of issued and outstanding shares (calculated on a non-diluted basis).
 
The RSU’s are generally issued with a three year vesting where they shall vest at the end of each of the first three years following the grant date. The price is determined on the vesting date.
 
47
 
 
The Deferred Share Unit Plan (the ”DSU Plan”) was approved and ratified by the shareholders at the Company’s annual meeting on June 25, 2019. The DSU Plan is a long-term incentive plan that permits the grant of deferred share units ("DSUs") to qualified directors, as determined by the Board in its absolute discretion (collectively, the "Designated Participants"). Designated Participants are required to elect (in respect of each calendar year) the amount of the aggregate annual retainer or fee to be received in the form of DSUs, cash, Common Shares purchased on the secondary market, or a combination thereof, subject to requirements imposed by the Board to receive a specified minimum value of his or her annual retainer or fee in the form of DSUs. DSUs granted under the DSU Plan are to be settled at the election of the Board in cash, Common Shares issued from treasury (subject to Shareholder approval of unallocated entitlements thereunder every three years thereafter), or, at the election of the Board, or a combination of cash and Common Shares.
 
The ESP Plan is approved and ratified by shareholders every three years at the Company’s AGM. The ESP Plan was initially approved and ratified at the Company’s AGM held on August 25, 2020. The shareholders of the Company and subsequently the TSX approved, the ESP Plan.
 
The following stock options, RSUs, ESP Plan matches and DSUs were granted to NXT’s executive officers and directors in the three prior fiscal years ended December 31, 2020, 2019, and 2018 and to date to April 30, 2021.
 
To April 30, 2021:
 
A total of 8,500 stock options with and exercise price of $0.49 per common share were earned by a director of the Company in lieu of director fees; and
A total of 16,557 common shares were matched by the Company through the ESP Plan for executive officers for the period ended April 30, 2021.
 
In 2020:
 
A total of 16,000 stock options with and exercise price of $0.51 per common share were earned by a director of the Company in lieu of director fees;
 
A total of 280,000 RSUs were granted for the year ending December 31, 2020 to officers of the Company;
 
A total of 37,354 DSUs were earned by a director of the Company in lieu of director fees; and
 
A total of 8,330 common shares were matched by the Company through the ESP Plan for executive officers for the year ended December 31, 2020.
 
In 2019
 
No stock options, RSUs or DSUs were granted in 2019.
 
In 2018:
 
 
A total of 1,000,000 stock options with an exercise price of $1.13 per common share were granted in February 2018 to the new Chief Financial Officer. These options were forfeited on December 30, 2018; and
 
A total of 150,000 stock options with an exercise price of $0.59 per common share were granted in November 2018 to the new Corporate Controller.
 
 
The following table sets forth information regarding outstanding stock options which have been granted to our directors and officers as of April 30, 2021. All options are issued at an exercise price set at the closing trade price on the trading date prior to the grant. Each option entitles the option holder to acquire one common share of the Company.
 
48
 
 
Issued and outstanding stock options held by directors and officers of the Company (as of April 30, 2021)
 
 
 
 
 
 

Option
Option
 
# of
 
% of total
Name and
 
Exercise
 

 GrantExpiry
 
options
 
outstanding
Position
 
 Price
 

 
 Date
 
 
 Date
 
 
held
 
 options
 
 
 
 
   
 
 
 
 
Eugene Woychyshyn $0.59  01-Nov-1801-Nov-23
  150,000 
 
VP Finance & CFO       
  150,000 
  34.9%
        
    
    
Charles Selby $1.50  22-Jul-1622-Jul-21
  50,000 
    
Director       
  50,000 
  11.6%
        
    
    
John Tilson $1.48  14-Jul-1614-Jul-21
  15,000 
    
Director $1.45  21-Dec-1621-Dec-21
  15,000 
    
  $0.51  30-Sep-2030-Sep-25
  16,000 
    
  $0.49  31-Mar-2131-Mar-26
  8,500 
    
        
  54,500 
  12.7%
        
    
    
Thomas Valentine $1.48  14-Jul-1614-Jul-21
  7,500 
    
Director $1.45  21-Dec-1621-Dec-21
  7,500 
    
        
  15,000 
  3.5%
        
    
    
Bruce G. Wilcox $1.48  14-Jul-1614-Jul-21
  15,000 
    
Director $1.45  21-Dec-1621-Dec-21
  15,000 
    
        
  30,000 
  7.0%
        
    
    
Total number of stock options held by officers and directors
 
  299,500 
  69.7%
 
Issued and outstanding RSUs held by directors and officers of the Company (as of April 30, 2021)
 
 RSURSU
 

 
 

 

% of total
Name andGrantExpiry
 
RSUs
 
RSUs
 
RSUs
 
outstanding
Position
 
Date
 
 
 Date
 
 
Granted 
 
Vested
 
  Unvested
 
Unvested RSUs
   
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Eugene Woychyshyn25-Aug-2025-Aug-23
  125,000 
  - 
  125,000 
 
VP Finance & CFO  
  125,000 
  - 
  125,000 
  10.4%
 
    
    
    
    
George Liszicasz25-Aug-2025-Aug-23
  155,000 
  - 
  155,000 
    
Director, President & CEO  
  155,000 
  - 
  155,000 
  12.9%
 
    
    
    
    
Total number of RSUs held by officers and directors 
  280,000 
  - 
  280,000 
  23.3%
 
Issued and outstanding DSUs held by directors of the Company (as of April 30, 2021)
 
Charles Selby has 37,354 DSUs at April 30, 2021.
 
Outstanding ESP Plan liabilities held by officers of the Company (as of April 30, 2021)
 
George Liszicasz and Eugene Woychyshyn currently have accrued 11,309 and 13,578 additional common shares in the ESP Plan as of April 30, 2021. These common shares will only be issued if they do not withdrawl common shares from the ESP Plan before November 1, 2021.
 
 
49
 
 
ITEM 7. 
MAJOR SHAREHOLDERS AND RELATED PARTY TRANSACTIONS
 
A.
Major shareholders.
 
The following table sets forth information concerning the beneficial ownership of our common shares as of
 
April 30, 2021 by persons who beneficially own 5% or more of the outstanding common shares of NXT, each person who is a director of NXT, each executive officer named in this Form 20-F, each individual referenced in Item 6.E above and all directors and executive officers as a group. For the purposes of this Form 20-F, a person is considered to be a “beneficial owner” of common shares in the Company if that person has, or shares with another person, the power to direct the vote or disposition of the common shares or to receive the economic benefit of ownership of the common shares.
 
A person is also deemed to be a beneficial owner of a common share if that person has the right to acquire the share within 60 days by option or other agreement (whether or not, in the case of a stock option, the current market price of the underlying common share is below the stock option exercise price). Therefore, the table below also reflects, for each such beneficial owner, the number of options exercisable into common shares, RSUs and DSUs to vest, within 60 days of April 30, 2021 that are owned by each beneficial owner, but, in determining the percentage ownership and general voting power of such person, does not assume the exercise of options or the conversion of securities owned by any other person.
 
We believe that the beneficial owners of common shares listed below, based on information they furnished, have sole voting and investment power over the number of shares listed opposite their names. The percentage of beneficial ownership is based on 64,514,921 common shares issued and outstanding as of April 30, 2021. This total of 64,514,921 excludes all outstanding options and warrants that are exercisable within 60 days of April 30, 2021 (which is adjusted for each individual’s % purposes as noted in footnote 4 below).
 
 Beneficial Ownership of Directors and Officers (“D&O”)
 
Beneficially Owned as at April 30, 2021
 
 
Percent of Common Shares 4

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Directors and Officers:
 
 
 
 
 
 
Frank Ingriselli 1
  50,000 
  * 3  
George Liszicasz 1 & 2
  15,037,234 
  23.31%
Charles Selby 1
  458,161 
  * 3  
John Tilson 1
  5,570,708 
  8.63%
Thomas E. Valentine 1
  15,000 
  * 3  
Bruce G. Wilcox 1
  395,000 
  * 3  
Eugene Woychyshyn2
  230,144 
  * 3  
 Total D & O Common Shares
  21,756,247 
  33.72%
Major Shareholders (> 5%):
    
 
AGV
  6,764,945 
  10.49%
Mork Capital Management, LLC.
  5,717,420 
  8.86%
 
1 Director of NXT
2 Officer of NXT 
3 Beneficially owns less than one percent of the total outstanding common shares.
4 For each beneficial owner’s percentage of common shares calculation, it is assumed that any stock options that they hold which are or will become exercisable within 60 days of April 30, 2021 have been exercised (while also assuming that no one else similarly exercises), and such options are thus included in both the numerator and denominator for purposes of each of their own individual calculations as follows:
 
 
 
common
 
 
 vested &
 
 
 
 
 
 
shares
 
 
 exercisable
 
 
Pro forma
 
 
 
held
 
 
 options
 
 
 total
 
Ingriselli
  50,000 
  - 
  50,000 
Liszicasz
  15,037,234 
  - 
  15,037,234 
Selby
  408,161 
  50,000 
  458,161 
Tilson
  5,516,208 
  54,500 
  5,570,708 
Valentine
  - 
  15,000 
  15,000 
Wilcox
  365,000 
  30,000 
  395,000 
Woychyshyn
  80,144 
  150,000 
  230,144 
 
  21,456,747 
  299,500 
  21,756,247 
 
50
 
 
Major changes in the last 3 years in the percentage ownership of persons who beneficially own (as at the respective December 31, year-end dates) 5% or more of the outstanding common shares of NXT were:
 
1.
Mr. Liszicasz entered into a matrimonial settlement dated December 23, 2019 that includes the transfer of 800,000 NXT common shares to his former spouse by March 31, 2020.
2.
Since May 5, 2019 Mr. Liszicasz and Mr. Tilson acquired common shares in acquisitions on the public markets.
3.
In December 2019 the Company completed the $1,250,000 targeted issuer bid, purchasing for cancellation 4,166,667 common shares in the capital of the Company from AGV, representing approximately 6.08% of the total outstanding Common Shares as of November 14, 2019, at a price of C$0.30 per Common Share.
4.
In July 2018, the company completed the Private Placement with AGV. In total, AGV purchased 10,264,946 Units at a price of $0.924 per Unit for total gross proceeds of approximately $9,484,810. As a result of the Private Placement, a total of 10,264,946 common shares and a total of 3,421,648 warrants were issued to the Subscriber. As of October 31, 2019 AGV’s 3,421,648 warrants (“Warrants”) expired.
 
NXT is a foreign private issuer for its current fiscal year. As of the last business day of the Company’s second fiscal quarter, the majority of the Company’s executive officers and directors are Canadian citizens who reside in Canada, the majority of the Company’s assets are in Canada and the Company is administered principally in Canada. The Company’s major shareholders in common shares have the same voting rights as other holders of common shares. The Company is not directly or indirectly owned or controlled by another corporation, a foreign government or any other natural or legal persons severally or jointly. There are no arrangements known to the Company which may result in a change of control of the Company.
 
B.
Related party transactions.
 
Summarized below are certain other transactions and business relationships between NXT and persons who are related parties, for the current fiscal year ended December 31, 2020 through the current date, April 30, 2021:
 
Details of stock options which have been granted to related parties during the above noted period are included with Item 6.E above. No stock options have been exercised by related parties in this period.
One of the members of NXT’s Board, Mr. Thomas Valentine is a partner in the law firm Norton Rose Fulbright, which provides legal advice to NXT. In 2020, NXT incurred legal expenses of $224,479 with this firm, for which a total of $1,570 is included in accounts payable as at December 31, 2020. Norton Rose Fulbright continues to provide legal services to NXT. In 2021 as of the report date, total fees incurred are approximately $25,000 for which $26,000 is still outstanding.
In February 2019, NXT entered into a Co-operative Agreement with AGV, for AGV to bring to proposal up to three SFD® surveys for cooperation with the Company within two years. The Co-operative Agreement expired on June 30, 2020.
In September , 2019, NXT and AGV entered into a loan arrangement whereby NXT loaned to AGV US$250,000 for the purpose of providing AGV with additional funds necessary to continue advancing the common objectives of the parties under the Co-operation Agreement and a sales representative agreement. The note receivable was fully collected in 2020.
A company owned by a family member of an executive officer was contracted to provide design services to the Company for a total cost of US$3,000 during 2020.
 
C.
Interests of experts and counsel.
 
Not applicable.
 
 
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ITEM 8.                       
FINANCIAL INFORMATION
 
A.
Consolidated statements and other financial information.
 
The Company’s consolidated financial statements are stated in Canadian dollars and are prepared in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles.
 
The financial statements and notes thereto as required under Item 8 are attached as Exhibit 15.1 to this annual report and are incorporated by reference herein. The audit report of KPMG LLP is included therein immediately preceding the consolidated financial statements and is also incorporated by reference herein.
 
No significant events or changes have occurred subsequent to the date of the December 31, 2020 consolidated financial statements, except as otherwise disclosed herein Item 8.B.
 
Legal Proceedings
 
To the best of the Company's knowledge, there are no legal or arbitration proceedings existing or pending which have had or may have, significant effects on the Company's financial position or profitability and no such proceedings are pending or known to be contemplated by governmental authorities.
 
Dividend Policy
 
The Company does not pay dividends.
 
B.
Significant Changes.
 
As of April 30, 2021, one subsequent events has occurred subsequent to the date of consolidated financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2020.
 
1.
On April 18, 2021 the Company acquired the SFD® technology rights for Geothermal Resources from Mr. Liszicasz. This agreement was negotiated between Mr. Liszicasz and the independent members of the Company’s Board of Directors and is an amendment of the TTA. The consideration for the acquisition of the Geothermal Resource will be settled in the following milestones.
a.
A signature payment of US$40,000 and 300,000 Common Shares, with the Common Shares subject to TSX approval;
b.
CAD$20,000 research milestone will be pad upon the awarding of a research grant to between CAD$100,000 and CAD$200,000 to the Company to further develop the Geothermal Resource application. If the initial research grant is greater than CAD$200,000 then an additional CAD$5,000 will be paid with this milestone;
c.
US$200,000 milestone payment will be made when the Company’s cash balance is over CAD$5,000,000, due to receipt of funds from operations; and
d.
US$250,000 SFD® project contract milestone. This milestone will be paid if within two (2) years the Company signs SFD® contracts valued at US$10,000,000 or greater, and is in receipt of at least US$5,000,000 cash from those same SFD® project contracts.
Geothermal applications include naturally occurring sub-surface fluid reservoirs or rock conditions from which heat can be extracted and utilized for generating electric power, or for direct utilization in industrial, agricultural or domestic applications. The main subsurface properties such as porosity, permeability and impermeable cap rock that are vital in the search for oil and gas resources and are equally critical for locating the most prospective geothermal resources. For these reasons, the SFD® technology has a natural extension to geothermal applications and given the currently occurring step change in the worldwide energy industry.
 
 
 
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NXT’s interim, unaudited consolidated financial statements for the 3-month period ended March 31, 2021 will be released on May 11, 2021.
 
ITEM 9.       
THE OFFER AND LISTING
 
A.            
Offer and listing details.
 
Our common shares are currently quoted in the U.S. on the OTC Markets QB Exchange under the symbol “NSFDF”, in Canada on the TSX under the symbol “SFD”. There have been no trading suspensions over the last three years.
 
 
B.            
Plan of distribution.
 
Not applicable.
 
C.            
Markets.
 
Our common shares are currently quoted in the U.S. on the OTC Markets QB Exchange under the symbol “NSFDF”, in Canada on the TSX-V under the symbol “SFD.V” (to March 21, 2016) and on the TSX under the symbol “SFD” effective from March 22, 2016, and in Europe on the Frankfurt and Berlin Exchanges (both of these listings are inactive) under the symbol “EFW”.
 
The Company’s common shares commenced trading on the US Over-The-Counter Bulletin Board pursuant to a reverse takeover transaction in 1996, and were approved for listing on the Frankfurt and Berlin Exchanges in January 2004, and on the TSX-V in December 2007. Effective March 22, 2016, NXT upgraded its Canadian listing from the TSX-V to the TSX.
 
D.            
Selling shareholders.
 
Not applicable.
 
E.            
Dilution.
 
Not applicable.
 
F.            
Expenses of the issue.
 
Not applicable.
 
ITEM 10. 
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
 
A.            
Share capital.
 
Not applicable.
 
B.            
Memorandum and articles of association.
 
NXT was incorporated in the State of Nevada in 1994. With respect to the foregoing items, the law applicable to NXT in the Province of Alberta is not significantly different from that in the State of Nevada. NXT was established in Alberta pursuant to a Certificate of Continuance issued October 24, 2003 by the Registrar of Corporations of the Province of Alberta. NXT’s Alberta Corporate Access Number is 2010730915. The Articles of Continuance of NXT were amended to create the Series 1 Preferred Shares on December 28, 2006, and provide that there are no restrictions on the nature of the business that may be carried on by NXT. On September 19, 2008, pursuant to Articles of Amendment, the name of the Company was changed from Energy Exploration Technologies Inc. to NXT Energy Solutions Inc.
 
 
 
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Quorum
 
The Board of NXT may fix the quorum for meetings of the Board or of a committee of the Board, but unless so fixed, a majority of the directors or of a committee of directors holding office at the time of the meeting constitutes a quorum provided that no business may be transacted unless at least half of the directors present are resident Canadians. Business cannot be transacted without a quorum. A quorum of directors may vote on any matter of business properly brought before the meeting provided that where a director is a party to a material contract or proposed material contract or is a director or an officer of or has a material interest in any person who is a party to a material contract or proposed material contract with NXT, such director must disclose his or her interest at the earliest possible date, request the conflict be noted in the minutes of the meeting and with few exceptions, refrain from voting on the matter in which the director has a conflict of interest. There is no limitation on the Board to vote on matters of their remuneration as a director, officer, employee or agent of NXT or of an affiliate of NXT.
 
Borrowing Powers
 
The Board may, without authorization of the shareholders of NXT:
(a)
borrow money on the credit of NXT;
(b)
issue, reissue, sell or pledge debt obligations of NXT;
(c)
subject to restrictions respecting financial assistance prescribed in the ABCA, guarantee, on behalf of NXT, the performance of an obligation of any person; and
(d)
mortgage, hypothecate, pledge or otherwise create a security interest in all or any property of NXT, owned or subsequently acquired, to secure any obligation of NXT.
 
The Board of NXT may, by resolution, delegate to a director, a committee of directors or an officer all or any of the foregoing borrowing powers.
 
Directors
 
A person is qualified to be or stand for election as a director provided such person is at least 18 years of age, is not bankrupt and is not mentally incapacitated pursuant to applicable mental health legislation of the Province of Alberta or pursuant to an order of the courts of the Province of Alberta. There is no provision in NXT’s Articles or By-Laws relating to the retirement or non-retirement of directors under an age limit requirement. There is also no requirement in NXT’s Articles or By-Laws for a director to hold securities of NXT.
 
Pursuant to the ABCA, a director or officer shall not be disqualified by his office, or be required to vacate his office, by reason only that he is a party to, or is a director or officer or has a material interest in any person who is a party to, a material contract or proposed material contract with NXT or subsidiary thereof. Such a director or officer shall, however, disclose the nature and extent of his interest in the contract at the time and in the manner provided by the ABCA. Any such contract or proposed contract shall be referred to the Board of NXT or shareholders for approval even if such contract is one that in the ordinary course of NXT's business would not require approval by the Board or shareholders. Subject to the provisions of the ABCA, a director shall not by reason only of his office be accountable to NXT or to its shareholders for any profit or gain realized from such a contract or transaction, and such contract or transaction shall not be void or voidable by reason only of the director's interest therein, provided that the required declaration and disclosure of interest is properly made, the contract or transaction is approved by the directors or shareholders, and it is fair and reasonable to NXT at the time it was approved and, if required by the ABCA, the director refrains from voting as a director on the contract or transaction and absents himself from the director's meeting at which the contract is authorized or approved by the directors, except attendance for the purpose of being counted in the quorum.
 
Rights Attached to Common Shares
 
The holders of the common shares are entitled to dividends as and when declared by the directors of NXT, to one vote per share at meetings of shareholders of NXT, and upon liquidation, subject to the rights of the holders of preferred shares, are entitled to share rateably with the holders of the common shares in all distributions of assets of NXT.
 
 
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Rights Attached to Preferred Shares
 
Preferred shares may be issued from time to time in one or more series. The Board of NXT is expressly authorized to provide by resolution duly adopted prior to issuance, for the creation of each such series and to fix the designation, rights, privileges, restrictions and conditions attached to the shares of each such series, including the rate or amount of dividends or the method of calculating dividends, the dates of payment of dividends, the redemption, purchase and/or conversion prices and terms and conditions of redemption, purchase and/or conversion, and any sinking fund or other provisions.
 
The preferred shares of each series shall, with respect to the payment of dividends and the distribution of assets or return of capital in the event of liquidation, dissolution or winding-up of NXT, whether voluntary or involuntary, or any other return of capital or distribution of the assets of NXT among its shareholders for the purpose of winding up its affairs, rank on a parity with the preferred shares of every other series and be entitled to preference over the common shares and over any other shares of NXT, if any, ranking junior to the preferred shares. The preferred shares of any series may also be given other preferences, not inconsistent with the articles of continuance of NXT (the "Articles"), over the common shares and any other shares of NXT ranking junior to the preferred shares of a series as may be fixed by the Board of NXT.
 
If any cumulative dividends or amounts payable on the return of capital in respect of a series of preferred shares are not paid in full, all series of preferred shares shall participate rateably in respect of accumulated dividends and return of capital.
 
Unless the Board of NXT otherwise determine in the articles of amendment designating a series of preferred shares, the holder of each share of a series of preferred shares shall not, as such, be entitled to receive notice of or vote at any meeting of shareholders, except as otherwise specifically provided in the ABCA.
 
Alteration of the Rights of Shareholders
 
Under the ABCA, any substantive change to the Articles (including, but not limited to, change of any maximum number of shares that NXT is authorized to issue, creation of new classes of shares, add, change or remove any rights, privileges, restrictions and conditions in respect of all or any of its shares, whether issued or unissued, change the shares of any class or series, whether issued or unissued, into a different number of shares of the same class or series or into the same or a different number of shares of other classes or series) or other fundamental changes to the capital structure of NXT, including a proposed amalgamation or continuance of NXT out of the jurisdiction, requires shareholder approval by not less than 2/3 of the votes cast by shareholders voting in person or by proxy at a shareholders’ meeting called for that purpose. In certain prescribed circumstances, holders of shares of a class or of a series are entitled to vote separately as a class or series on a proposal to amend the Articles whether or not shares of a class or series otherwise carry the right to vote. The holders of a series of shares of a class are entitled to vote separately as a series only if the series is affected by an amendment in a manner different from other shares of the same class.
 
Meetings of Shareholders
 
NXT’s By-Laws provide that the Board shall call an annual meeting of shareholders to be held not later than fifteen months after holding the last preceding annual meeting. NXT’s By-Laws provide that the Board may at any time call a special meeting of shareholders. Only the registered holders of shares are entitled to receive notice of and vote at annual and special meetings of shareholders, except to the extent that:
 
(a)
if a record date is fixed, the person transfers ownership of any of the person’s shares after the record date; or
 
(b)
if no record date is fixed, the person transfers ownership of any of the person’s shares after the date on which the list of shareholders is prepared; and
 
(c)
the transferee of those shares;
 
produces properly endorsed share certificates; or
otherwise establishes ownership of the shares; and
demands, not later than ten (10) days before the meeting, that the transferee’s name be included in the list before the meeting; and
in which case the transferee is entitled to vote the shares.
 
 
 
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The ABCA also permits the holders of not less than 5% of the issued voting securities of NXT to give notice to the Board requiring them to call and hold a meeting of NXT.
 
The only persons entitled to be present at a meeting of shareholders are:
 
(a)
the shareholders entitled to vote at the meeting;
(b)
the Board of NXT;
(c)
the external auditor of NXT; and
(d)
any others who, although not entitled or required under the provisions of the ABCA, any unanimous shareholder agreement, or the Articles or the By-Laws, are allowed to be present at the meeting.
 
Any other person may be admitted only on the invitation of the Chairperson of the meeting or with the consent of the meeting.
 
There are no restrictions in NXT’s Articles or By-Laws as to the number of shares that may be held by non-residents other than restrictions set out in the Investment Canada Act (the “ICA”) (Canada), as further described under Item 10.D – “Exchange Controls” below.
 
Change of Control
 
There are no specific provisions in the Articles or By-Laws of NXT that have the effect of delaying, deferring or preventing a change of control of NXT and that would operate only with respect to a merger, acquisition or corporate restructuring involving NXT (or any of its subsidiaries). Notwithstanding this, the Board, under the general powers conferred to it under NXT’s By-Laws, have the authority to approve and invoke a shareholders rights plan that will protect shareholders from unfair, abusive or coercive take-over strategies, including the acquisition or control of NXT by a bidder in a transaction or series of transactions that does not treat all shareholders equally or fairly or that does not afford all shareholders an equal opportunity to share in any premium paid upon an acquisition of control. NXT has not adopted such a plan.
 
Shareholder Ownership Disclosure
 
There are no provisions in NXT’s By-Laws regarding public disclosure of individual shareholdings.
 
C.            
Material contracts.
 
Each material contract, other than contracts entered into in the ordinary course of business, to which the Company has been a party, for the two years immediately preceding publication of this annual report, is summarized elsewhere herein. Please see Item 4. B for description of the AGV Co-operative Agreement, the AGV Notes Receivable, the Targeted Issuer Bid, the amendment to the TTA for geothermal rights, and the Nigerian SFD® survey with PE. Also see Item 3. D for a description of the Sales Leaseback contract.
 
D.            
Exchange controls.
 
There are no governmental laws, decrees or regulations in Canada relating to restrictions on the export or import of capital, or affecting the remittance of interest, dividends or other payments to non-residents. Dividends paid to U.S. residents, however, are subject to a 15% withholding tax or a 5% withholding tax for dividends if the shareholder is a corporation owning at least 10% of the outstanding voting shares of NXT pursuant to Article X of the reciprocal tax treaty between Canada and the U.S.
 
Except as provided in the ICA, which has provisions that restrict the holding of voting shares by non-Canadians, there are no limitations specific to the rights of non-Canadians to hold or vote the common shares under the laws of Canada or the Province of Alberta, or in the charter documents of NXT or its subsidiaries.
 
Management of NXT believes that the following summary fairly describes those provisions of the ICA pertinent to an investment in NXT by a person who is not a Canadian resident (a “non-Canadian”).
 
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The ICA requires a non-Canadian making an investment which would result in the acquisition of control of a Canadian business (i.e. the gross value of the assets of which exceed a certain monetary threshold) to identify, notify, or file an application for review with the Investment Review Division of Industry Canada (“IRD”).
 
The notification procedure involves a brief statement of information about the investment on a prescribed form which is required to be filed with the IRD by the investor at any time up to 30 days following implementation of the investment. It is intended that investments requiring only notification will proceed without government intervention unless the investment is in a specific type of business activity related to Canada’s cultural heritage and national identity.
 
If an investment is reviewable under the ICA, an application for review in the form prescribed is normally required to be filed with the IRD prior to the investment taking place and the investment may not be implemented until the review has been completed and the Minister of Industry Canada (the “Minister”) (the Minister responsible for Investment Canada) is satisfied that the investment is likely to be of net benefit to Canada. The Minister has up to 75 days to make this determination. If the Minister is not satisfied that the investment is likely to be of net benefit to Canada, the non-Canadian must not implement the investment or, if the investment has been implemented, may be required to divest himself of control of the business that is the subject of the investment.
 
The following investments by non-Canadians are subject to notification under the ICA:
 
1.
An investment to establish a new Canadian business; and
2.
An investment to acquire control of a Canadian business that is not reviewable pursuant to the Act.
 
The following investments by a non-Canadian are subject to review under the ICA:
 
1.
An investment is reviewable if there is an acquisition of a Canadian business and the asset value of the Canadian business being acquired equals or exceeds the following thresholds:
 
(a)
For non-World Trade Organization (“WTO”) investors, the threshold is $5 million for a direct acquisition and $50 million for an indirect acquisition; the $5 million threshold will apply however for an indirect acquisition if the asset value of the Canadian business being acquired exceeds 50% of the asset value of the global transaction;
 
(b)
Except as specified in paragraph (c) below, a threshold is calculated annually for reviewable direct acquisitions by or from WTO investors. The threshold for 2012 was $330 million. Pursuant to Canada’s international commitments, indirect acquisitions by or from WTO investors are not reviewable; and
 
(c)
The limits set out in paragraph (a) apply to all investors for acquisitions of a Canadian business that:
 
(i)
engages in the production of uranium and owns an interest in a producing uranium property in Canada;
(ii)
provides any financial service;
(iii)
provides any transportation services; or
(iv)
is a cultural business.
 
Notwithstanding the above, any investment which is usually only notifiable, including the establishment of a new Canadian business, and which falls within a specific business activity, including the publication and distribution of books, magazines, newspapers, film or video recordings, audio or video music recordings, or music in print or machine-readable form may be reviewed if an Order-in-Council directing a review is made and a notice is sent to the investor within 21 days following the receipt of a certified complete notification.
 
Generally speaking, an acquisition is direct if it involves the acquisition of control of the Canadian business or of its direct or indirect Canadian parent and an acquisition is indirect if it involves the acquisition of control of a non-Canadian direct or indirect parent of an entity carrying on the Canadian business. No change of voting control will be deemed to have occurred if less than one-third of the voting control of a Canadian corporation is acquired by an investor.
 
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A WTO investor, as defined in the ICA, includes an individual who is a national of a member country of the WTO or who has the right of permanent residence in relation to that WTO member, a government or government agency of a WTO investor-controlled corporation, a limited partnership, trust or joint venture that is neither WTO-investor controlled or Canadian controlled of which two-thirds of its Board, general partners or trustees, as the case may be, are any combination of Canadians and WTO investors.
 
The ICA exempts certain transactions from the notification and review provisions of ICA, including, among others, (a) an acquisition of voting shares if the acquisition were made in the ordinary course of that person’s business as a trader or dealer in securities; (b) an acquisition of control of the Company in connection with the realization of a security interest granted for a loan or other financial assistance and not for any purpose related to the provisions of the ICA; (c) the acquisition of voting interests by any person in the ordinary course of a business carried on by that person that consists of providing, in Canada, venture capital on terms and conditions not inconsistent with such terms and conditions as may be fixed by the Minister; and (d) acquisition of control of the Company by reason of an amalgamation, merger, consolidation or corporate reorganization, following which the ultimate direct or indirect control in fact of the Company, through the ownership of voting interests, remains unchanged.
 
E.            
Taxation.
 
Certain United States Federal Income Tax Considerations
 
The following is a general summary of certain material U.S. federal income tax considerations applicable to a U.S. Holder (as defined below) arising from and relating to the acquisition, ownership and disposition of common shares of the Company.
 
This summary is for general information purposes only and does not purport to be a complete analysis or listing of all potential U.S. federal income tax considerations that may apply to a U.S. Holder arising from and relating to the acquisition, ownership and disposition of common shares. In addition, this summary does not take into account the individual facts and circumstances of any particular U.S. Holder that may affect the U.S. federal income tax consequences to such U.S. Holder, including, without limitation, specific tax consequences to a U.S. Holder under an applicable income tax treaty. Accordingly, this summary is not intended to be, and should not be construed as, legal or U.S. federal income tax advice with respect to any U.S. Holder. This summary does not address the U.S. federal net investment income, U.S. federal alternative minimum, U.S. federal estate and gift, U.S. state and local, and non-U.S. tax consequences to U.S. Holders of the acquisition, ownership and disposition of common shares. In addition, except as specifically set forth below, this summary does not discuss applicable tax reporting requirements. Each prospective U.S. Holder should consult its own tax advisors regarding the U.S. federal, U.S. federal net investment income, U.S. federal alternative minimum, U.S. federal estate and gift, U.S. state and local, and non-U.S. tax consequences relating to the acquisition, ownership and disposition of common shares.
 
No legal opinion from U.S. legal counsel or ruling from the Internal Revenue Service (the “IRS”) has been requested, or will be obtained, regarding the U.S. federal income tax consequences of the acquisition, ownership, and disposition of common shares. This summary is not binding on the IRS and the IRS is not precluded from taking a position that is different from, and contrary to, the positions taken in this summary. In addition, because the authorities on which this summary is based are subject to various interpretations, the IRS and the U.S. courts could disagree with one or more of the conclusions described in this summary.
 
 
 
58
 
 
Scope of this Summary
 
Authorities
 
This summary is based on the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (the “Code”), Treasury Regulations (whether final, temporary, or proposed), published rulings of the IRS, published administrative positions of the IRS, the Convention Between Canada and the United States of America with Respect to Taxes on Income and Capital, signed September 26, 1980, as amended (the “Canada-U.S. Tax Convention”), and U.S. court decisions that are applicable, and, in each case, as in effect and available, as of the date of this document. Any of the authorities on which this summary is based could be changed in a material and adverse manner at any time, and any such change could be applied retroactively. This summary does not discuss the potential effects, whether adverse or beneficial, of any proposed legislation.
 
U.S. Holders
 
For purposes of this summary, the term "U.S. Holder" means a beneficial owner of common shares that is for U.S. federal income tax purposes:
 
an individual who is a citizen or resident of the United States;
a corporation (or other entity treated as a corporation for U.S. federal income tax purposes) organized under the laws of the United States, any state thereof or the District of Columbia;
an estate whose income is subject to U.S. federal income taxation regardless of its source; or
a trust that (1) is subject to the primary supervision of a court within the U.S. and the control of one or more U.S. persons for all substantial decisions or (2) has a valid election in effect under applicable Treasury Regulations to be treated as a U.S. person.
U.S. Holders Subject to Special U.S. Federal Income Tax Rules Not Addressed
 
This summary does not address the U.S. federal income tax considerations applicable to U.S. Holders that are subject to special provisions under the Code, including, but not limited to, U.S. Holders that: (a) are tax-exempt organizations, qualified retirement plans, individual retirement accounts, or other tax-deferred accounts; (b) are financial institutions, underwriters, insurance companies, real estate investment trusts, or regulated investment companies; (c) are broker-dealers, dealers, or traders in securities or currencies that elect to apply a mark-to-market accounting method; (d) have a “functional currency” other than the U.S. dollar; (e) own common shares as part of a straddle, hedging transaction, conversion transaction, constructive sale, or other integrated transaction; (f) acquire common shares in connection with the exercise of employee stock options or otherwise as compensation for services; (g) hold common shares other than as a capital asset within the meaning of Section 1221 of the Code (generally, property held for investment purposes); (h) are subject to special accounting rules; or (i) own, have owned or will own (directly, indirectly, or by attribution) 10% or more of the total combined voting power or value of the outstanding shares of the Company. This summary also does not address the U.S. federal income tax considerations applicable to U.S. Holders who are: (a) U.S. expatriates or former long-term residents of the U.S.; (b) persons that have been, are, or will be a resident or deemed to be a resident in Canada for purposes of the Income Tax Act (Canada) (the “Tax Act”); (c) persons that use or hold, will use or hold, or that are or will be deemed to use or hold common shares in connection with carrying on a business in Canada; (d) persons whose common shares constitute “taxable Canadian property” under the Tax Act; or (e) persons that have a permanent establishment in Canada for the purposes of the Canada-U.S. Tax Convention. U.S. Holders that are subject to special provisions under the Code, including, but not limited to, U.S. Holders described immediately above, should consult their own tax advisors regarding the U.S. federal, U.S. federal net investment income, U.S. federal alternative minimum, U.S. federal estate and gift, U.S. state and local, and non-U.S. tax consequences relating to the acquisition, ownership and disposition of common shares.
 
If an entity or arrangement that is classified as a partnership (or other “pass-through” entity) for U.S. federal income tax purposes holds common shares, the U.S. federal income tax consequences to such entity or arrangement and the partners (or other owners or participants) of such entity or arrangement generally will depend on the activities of the entity or arrangement and the status of such partners (or owners or participants). This summary does not address the tax consequences to any such partner (or owner or participants). Partners (or other owners or participants) of entities or arrangements that are classified as partnerships or as “pass-through” entities for U.S. federal income tax purposes should consult their own tax advisors regarding the U.S. federal income tax consequences arising from and relating to the acquisition, ownership and disposition of common shares.
 
 
 
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Passive Foreign Investment Company Rules
 
If the Company were to constitute a PFIC for any year during a U.S. Holder’s holding period, then certain potentially adverse rules would affect the U.S. federal income tax consequences to a U.S. Holder resulting from the acquisition, ownership and disposition of shares. The Company believes that it was not a PFIC for the tax year ended December 31, 2020. No opinion of legal counsel or ruling from the IRS concerning the status of the Company as a PFIC has been obtained or is currently planned to be requested. However, PFIC classification is fundamentally factual in nature, generally cannot be determined until the close of the tax year in question and is determined annually. Additionally, the analysis depends, in part, on the application of complex U.S. federal income tax rules, which are subject to differing interpretations. Consequently, there can be no assurance that the Company has never been and will not become a PFIC for any tax year during which U.S. Holders hold shares.
 
In addition, in any year in which the Company is classified as a PFIC, a U.S. Holder will be required to file an annual report with the IRS containing such information as Treasury Regulations and/or other IRS guidance may require. A failure to satisfy such reporting requirements may result in an extension of the time period during which the IRS can assess a tax. U.S. Holders should consult their own tax advisors regarding the requirements of filing such information returns under these rules, including the requirement to file an IRS Form 8621 annually.
 
The Company generally will be a PFIC under Section 1297 of the Code if, after the application of certain “look-through” rules with respect to subsidiaries in which the Company holds at least 25% of the value of such subsidiary, for a tax year, (a) 75% or more of the gross income of the Company for such tax year is passive income (the “income test”) or (b) 50% or more of the value of the Company’s assets either produce passive income or are held for the production of passive income (the “asset test”), based on the quarterly average of the fair market value of such assets. “Gross income” generally includes all sales revenues less the cost of goods sold, plus income from investments and incidental or outside operations or sources, and “passive income” generally includes, for example, dividends, interest, certain rents and royalties, certain gains from the sale of stock and securities, and certain gains from commodities transactions. Active business gains arising from the sale of commodities generally are excluded from passive income if substantially all of a foreign corporation’s commodities are stock in trade or inventory, depreciable property used in a trade or business or supplies regularly used or consumed in the ordinary course of its trade or business, and certain other requirements are satisfied.
 
If the Company were a PFIC in any tax year during which a U.S. Holder held shares, such holder generally would be subject to special rules with respect to “excess distributions” made by the Company on the shares and with respect to gain from the disposition of shares. An “excess distribution” generally is defined as the excess of distributions with respect to the shares received by a U.S Holder in any tax year over 125% of the average annual distributions such U.S. Holder has received from the Company during the shorter of the three preceding tax years, or such U.S. Holder’s holding period for the shares. Generally, a U.S. Holder would be required to allocate any excess distribution or gain from the disposition of the shares ratably over its holding period for the shares. Such amounts allocated to the year of the disposition or excess distribution would be taxed as ordinary income, and amounts allocated to prior tax years would be taxed as ordinary income at the highest tax rate in effect for each such year and an interest charge at a rate applicable to underpayments of tax would apply.
 
While there are U.S. federal income tax elections that sometimes can be made to mitigate these adverse tax consequences (including the “QEF Election” under Section 1295 of the Code and the “Mark-to-Market Election” under Section 1296 of the Code), such elections are available in limited circumstances and must be made in a timely manner.
U.S. Holders should be aware that, for each tax year, if any, that the Company is a PFIC, the Company can provide no assurances that it will satisfy the record-keeping requirements of a PFIC, or that it will make available to U.S. Holders the information such U.S. Holders require to make a QEF Election with respect to the Company or any subsidiary that also is classified as a PFIC.
 
Certain additional adverse rules may apply with respect to a U.S. Holder if the Company is a PFIC, regardless of whether the U.S. Holder makes a QEF Election. These rules include special rules that apply to the amount of foreign tax credit that a U.S. Holder may claim on a distribution from a PFIC. Subject to these special rules, foreign taxes paid with respect to any distribution in respect of stock in a PFIC are generally eligible for the foreign tax credit. U.S. Holders should consult their own tax advisors regarding the potential application of the PFIC rules to the ownership and disposition of shares, and the availability of certain U.S. tax elections under the PFIC rules.
 
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General Rules Applicable to the Ownership and Disposition of Common Shares
 
The following discussion describes the general rules applicable to the ownership and disposition of the common shares but is subject in its entirety to the special rules described above under the heading “Passive Foreign Investment Company Rules.”
 
Distributions on Common Shares
 
A U.S. Holder that receives a distribution, including a constructive distribution, with respect to a common share will be required to include the amount of such distribution in gross income as a dividend (without reduction for any Canadian income tax withheld from such distribution) to the extent of the current and accumulated “earnings and profits” of the Company, as computed for U.S. federal income tax purposes. A dividend generally will be taxed to a U.S. Holder at ordinary income tax rates if the Company is a PFIC for the tax year of such distribution or the preceding tax year. To the extent that a distribution exceeds the current and accumulated “earnings and profits” of the Company, such distribution will be treated first as a tax-free return of capital to the extent of a U.S. Holder's tax basis in the common shares and thereafter as gain from the sale or exchange of such common shares. (See “Sale or Other Taxable Disposition of Common Shares” below). However, the Company may not maintain the calculations of its earnings and profits in accordance with U.S. federal income tax principles, and each U.S. Holder may have to assume that any distribution by the Company with respect to the common shares will constitute ordinary dividend income. Dividends received on common shares by corporate U.S. Holders generally will not be eligible for the “dividends received deduction.” Subject to applicable limitations and provided the Company is eligible for the benefits of the Canada-U.S. Tax Convention, dividends paid by the Company to non-corporate U.S. Holders, including individuals, generally will be eligible for the preferential tax rates applicable to long-term capital gains for dividends, provided certain holding period and other conditions are satisfied, including that the Company not be classified as a PFIC in the tax year of distribution or in the preceding tax year. The dividend rules are complex, and each U.S. Holder should consult its own tax advisors regarding the application of such rules.
 
Sale or Other Taxable Disposition of Common Shares
 
Upon the sale or other taxable disposition of common shares, a U.S. Holder generally will recognize capital gain or loss in an amount equal to the difference between the U.S. dollar value of cash received plus the fair market value of any property received and such U.S. Holder's tax basis in such common shares sold or otherwise disposed of. A U.S. Holder’s tax basis in common shares generally will be such holder’s U.S. dollar cost for such common shares. Gain or loss recognized on such sale or other disposition generally will be long-term capital gain or loss if, at the time of the sale or other disposition, the common shares have been held for more than one year.
 
Preferential tax rates currently apply to long-term capital gain of a U.S. Holder that is an individual, estate, or trust. There are currently no preferential tax rates for long-term capital gain of a U.S. Holder that is a corporation. Deductions for capital losses are subject to significant limitations under the Code.
 
Additional Considerations
 
Receipt of Foreign Currency
 
The amount of any distribution paid to a U.S. Holder in foreign currency, or on the sale, exchange or other taxable disposition of common shares, generally will be equal to the U.S. dollar value of such foreign currency based on the exchange rate applicable on the date of receipt (regardless of whether such foreign currency is converted into U.S. dollars at that time). A U.S. Holder will have a basis in the foreign currency equal to its U.S. dollar value on the date of receipt. Any U.S. Holder who converts or otherwise disposes of the foreign currency after the date of receipt may have a foreign currency exchange gain or loss that would be treated as ordinary income or loss, and generally will be U.S. source income or loss for foreign tax credit purposes. Different rules apply to U.S. Holders who use the accrual method of tax accounting. Each U.S. Holder should consult its own U.S. tax advisors regarding the U.S. federal income tax consequences of receiving, owning, and disposing of foreign currency.
 
 
 
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Foreign Tax Credit
 
Subject to the PFIC rules discussed above, a U.S. Holder that pays (whether directly or through withholding) Canadian income tax with respect to dividends paid on the common shares generally will be entitled, at the election of such U.S. Holder, to receive either a deduction or a credit for such Canadian income tax. Generally, a credit will reduce a U.S. Holder’s U.S. federal income tax liability on a dollar-for-dollar basis, whereas a deduction will reduce a U.S. Holder’s income that is subject to U.S. federal income tax. This election is made on a year-by-year basis and applies to all foreign taxes paid (whether directly or through withholding) by a U.S. Holder during a year. The foreign tax credit rules are complex and involve the application of rules that depend on a U.S. Holder’s particular circumstances. Accordingly, each U.S. Holder should consult its own U.S. tax advisors regarding the foreign tax credit rules.
 
Backup Withholding and Information Reporting
 
Under U.S. federal income tax law, certain categories of U.S. Holders must file information returns with respect to their investment in, or involvement in, a foreign corporation. For example, U.S. return disclosure obligations (and related penalties) are imposed on individuals who are U.S. Holders that hold certain specified foreign financial assets in excess of certain thresholds. The definition of specified foreign financial assets includes not only financial accounts maintained in foreign financial institutions, but also, unless held in accounts maintained by a financial institution, any stock or security issued by a non-U.S. person, any financial instrument or contract held for investment that has an issuer or counterparty other than a U.S. person and any interest in a foreign entity. U.S. Holders may be subject to these reporting requirements unless their common shares are held in an account at certain financial institutions. Penalties for failure to file certain of these information returns are substantial. U.S. Holders should consult with their own tax advisors regarding the requirements of filing information returns, including the requirement to file an IRS Form 8938.
 
Payments made within the U.S., or by a U.S. payer or U.S. middleman, of dividends on, and proceeds arising from the sale or other taxable disposition of, common shares will generally be subject to information reporting and backup withholding tax, at the rate of 24%, if a U.S. Holder (a) fails to furnish such U.S. Holder’s correct U.S. taxpayer identification number (generally on Form W-9), (b) furnishes an incorrect U.S. taxpayer identification number, (c) is notified by the IRS that such U.S. Holder has previously failed to properly report items subject to backup withholding tax, or (d) fails to certify, under penalty of perjury, that such U.S. Holder has furnished its correct U.S. taxpayer identification number and that the IRS has not notified such U.S. Holder that it is subject to backup withholding tax. However, certain exempt persons generally are excluded from these information reporting and backup withholding rules. Backup withholding is not an additional tax. Any amounts withheld under the U.S. backup withholding tax rules will be allowed as a credit against a U.S. Holder’s U.S. federal income tax liability, if any, or will be refunded, if such U.S. Holder furnishes required information to the IRS in a timely manner.
 
The discussion of reporting requirements set forth above is not intended to constitute a complete description of all reporting requirements that may apply to a U.S. Holder. A failure to satisfy certain reporting requirements may result in an extension of the time period during which the IRS can assess a tax and, under certain circumstances, such an extension may apply to assessments of amounts unrelated to any unsatisfied reporting requirement. Each U.S. Holder should consult its own tax advisors regarding the information reporting and backup withholding rules.
 
THE ABOVE SUMMARY IS NOT INTENDED TO CONSTITUTE A COMPLETE ANALYSIS OF ALL TAX CONSIDERATIONS APPLICABLE TO U.S. HOLDERS WITH RESPECT TO THE ACQUISITION, OWNERSHIP, AND DISPOSITION OF COMMON SHARES. U.S. HOLDERS SHOULD CONSULT THEIR OWN TAX ADVISORS AS TO THE TAX CONSIDERATIONS APPLICABLE TO THEM IN THEIR OWN PARTICULAR CIRCUMSTANCES.
 
 
F.            
Dividends and paying agents.
 
Not applicable.
 
G.            
Statement by experts.
 
 
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Not applicable.
 
H.            
Documents on display.
 
We will furnish our shareholders with annual reports, which will include a review of operations and annual audited consolidated financial statements prepared in conformity with U.S. GAAP. We intend, although we are not obligated to do so, to furnish when requested by our shareholders quarterly reports by mail with the assistance of a corporate services provider, which will include unaudited interim financial information prepared in conformity with U.S. GAAP for each of the three quarters of each fiscal year following the end of each such quarter. We may discontinue providing quarterly reports at any time without prior notice to our shareholders. For additional information on the Company, please consult our website at www.nxtenergy.com, or the SEDAR website at http://www.sedar.com.
 
Our reports and other information, including this annual report and the exhibits hereto, as filed with the SEC in accordance with the Exchange Act, may be inspected and copied at the public reference facilities maintained by the SEC at 100 F Street, Washington, D.C. 20549. In addition, copies of such reports and other information filed with the SEC can be obtained from www.sec.gov.
 
ITEM 11. 
QUANTITATIVE AND QUALITATIVE DISCLOSURES ABOUT MARKET RISK
 
As at December 31, 2020 and to date in 2021, we do not have any interest bearing debt facilities or any forward / futures hedging contracts in place to manage risks related to foreign currency or interest rate fluctuations.
 
Currency Fluctuations
 
The Company is exposed to foreign exchange risk in relation to its holding of significant US$ balances in cash and cash equivalents, short-term investments, accounts receivable, note receivable, deposits, accounts payables and accrued liabilities and entering into United States dollar revenue contracts. To mitigate exposure to fluctuations in foreign exchange, the Company does not currently enter into hedging contracts, but uses strategies to reduce the volatility of United States Dollar assets including converting excess United States dollars to Canadian dollars. As at December 31, 2020, the Company held net U.S dollar assets totaling US$2,164,285. Accordingly, a hypothetical 10% change in the value of one United States dollar expressed in Canadian dollars as at December 31, 2020 would have had an approximately $276,000 effect on the unrealized foreign exchange gain or loss for the year.
 
Interest Fluctuations
 
As at December 31, 2020, we held a total of $3,031,406 in cash, cash equivalents and short term investments. If all this cash was held in an interest bearing account for a full year, an actual 1% change in interest rates during the year ended December 31, 2020 would have resulted in approximately a $30,314 change in interest income for the year.
 
We caution that the factors referred to above and those referred to as part of particular forward-looking statements may not be exhaustive and that new risk factors emerge from time to time in our rapidly changing business environment.
 
 
ITEM 12. 
DESCRIPTION OF SECURITIES OTHER THAN EQUITY SECURITIES
 
Not applicable.
 
 
 
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PART II
 
ITEM 13. 
DEFAULTS, DIVIDEND ARREARAGES AND DELINQUENCIES
 
There have not been any defaults, dividend arrears or delinquencies.
ITEM 14. 
MATERIAL MODIFICATIONS TO THE RIGHTS OF SECURITY HOLDERS AND USE OF PROCEEDS
 
There have been no material modifications to the rights of security holders except as outlined in Item 4.B “Summary information on dependence on patents, licenses and contracts” within this Form 20-F.
 
ITEM 15. 
CONTROLS AND PROCEDURES
 
Disclosure Controls and Procedures
 
We maintain a set of disclosure controls and procedures (“DCP”) designed to ensure that information required to be disclosed by the Company in reports that it files or submits under the Exchange Act, is recorded, processed, summarized and reported within the time periods specified in SEC rules and forms. Disclosure controls and procedures include controls and procedures designed to ensure that information required to be disclosed in our reports is accumulated and communicated to management, to allow timely decisions regarding required disclosure. As discussed below, the Responsible Officers (as defined below) concluded that, as at December 31, 2020, its DCPs are not effective.
 
Management’s Annual Report on Internal Control Over Financial Reporting
 
The Company's Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”) and Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”, together the "Responsible Officers") are responsible for establishing and maintaining DCP, or causing them to be designed under their supervision, for NXT to provide reasonable assurance that material information relating to the Company is made known to the Responsible Officers by others within the organization, particularly during the period in which the Company's quarterly and year-end financial statements, Form 20-F and Canadian MD&A are being prepared.
 
As of December 31, 2020, we carried out an evaluation, under the supervision and with the participation of our management, including our Responsible Officers, of the effectiveness of the design and operation of the Company’s DCP as defined under the rules adopted by the Canadian securities regulatory authorities and in Rule 13a-15(e) of the Exchange Act. The evaluation concluded that there are material weaknesses in the Company’s ICFR that have a direct impact on the Company’s DCP as discussed in more detail below.
 
Our management, under the supervision of the Responsible Officers, is also responsible for establishing and maintaining adequate internal control over financial reporting (“ICFR”) as defined in Rule 13a-15(f) of the Exchange Act. Our internal control system was designed to provide reasonable assurance regarding the reliability of financial reporting and the preparation and fair presentation of our consolidated financial statements for external purposes in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. Our Responsible Officers assessed the effectiveness of our ICFR as of December 31, 2020. In making this assessment, they used the criteria established in Internal Control – Integrated Framework 2013, issued by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (“COSO”).
 
Our ICFR were not required to be independently audited. Accordingly, no independent audit was performed over the effectiveness of internal controls as at December 31, 2020 and this annual report does not include an attestation report of the Company’s registered public accounting firm regarding ICFR. Management’s report was not subject to attestation by the Company’s registered public accounting firm pursuant to rules of the SEC that permit the Company to provide only management’s report in this annual report.
 
During this process, we identified the following material weaknesses in the Company’s ICFR that have a direct impact on the Company’s DCP:
 
due to the limited number of staff, it is not feasible to achieve adequate segregation of incompatible duties – NXT partially mitigates this deficiency by adding management and Audit Committee review procedures over the areas where inadequate segregation of duties are of the greatest concern; and
 
NXT does not have a sufficient level of staff with specialized expertise to adequately conduct separate preparation and a subsequent independent review of certain complex or highly judgmental accounting issues – NXT partially mitigates this deficiency by preparing financial statements with their best judgments and estimates of the complex accounting matters and relies on reviews by management, external consultants and the Audit Committee for quality assurance.
 
 
 
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From time to time to reduce these risks and to supplement a small corporate finance function, the Company engages various outside experts and advisors to assist with various accounting, controls and tax issues in the normal course.
 
The Responsible Officers concluded that, as at December 31, 2020, its ICFR are not effective and as a result its DCPs are not sufficiently effective. NXT reached this conclusion based upon its assessment that there is a more than remote likelihood that its ICFR will not prevent or detect material misstatements if they should exist in the Company's consolidated financial statements. The Responsible Officers continue to take certain actions to mitigate these material weaknesses including: (i) the implementation of controls with regards to the review procedures surrounding its disclosure; and (ii) engagement of third-party specialists. In addition, the Chief Financial Officer engages subject matter consultants as the need arises.
 
Changes in Internal Controls
 
The small size of the Company's finance team has resulted in control deficiencies in maintaining DCPs and ICFR that in turn have led to a recurrence of previously identified deficient disclosure.  Given the small size of the Companies finance team and in order to improve ICFR moving forward, management has established a practice of increased engagement of the Company's Disclosure Committee and Audit Committee in reviewing the public disclosure and has increased engagement of external consultants and legal counsel as well.  
 
It should be noted that a control system, including the Company's DCPs and ICFR procedures, no matter how well conceived, can provide only reasonable, but not absolute assurance that the objectives of the control system will be met, and it should not be expected that the DCPs and ICFR will prevent all errors or fraud.  
 
There were no other changes in our internal control over financial reporting that materially affected, or are reasonably likely to materially affect, our internal control over financial reporting during the period ended December 31, 2020.
 
ITEM 16A. 
AUDIT COMMITTEE FINANCIAL EXPERT
 
Our Board has determined that we have at least one audit committee “financial expert” (as defined under Item 16.A of Form 20-F) serving on our Audit Committee. The Audit Committee consists of Messrs. Wilcox (Chair), Ingriselli, Selby and Tilson. Each member of the NXT Audit Committee has relevant experience in understanding and evaluating financial information, generally accepted accounting principles, control systems and audit committee functions. Each member of NXT’s Audit Committee is considered a financial expert, and are “independent” directors, as that term is defined under the listing standards of NASDAQ.
 
ITEM 16B. 
CODE OF ETHICS
 
NXT has in place a Code of Conduct & Business Ethics (the “Code of Conduct”) that applies to all of our directors, officers, employees, and consultants. This Code of Conduct is incorporated in our Employee Handbook, is an integral part of our employee contracts and our Employee Handbook and contains Company policies on Business Ethics, Employee Practices and Conflicts of Interest.
 
During 2020, the Company did not significantly amend its Code of Conduct or grant any waiver, including any implicit waiver, from any provision of the Code of Conduct to any of its directors, officers or employees. Copies of NXT’s Code of Conduct are available without charge to any person upon request from NXT’s Chief Financial Officer at nxt_info@nxtenergy.com or at NXT’s headquarters at Suite 302, 3320 – 17th Avenue SW, Calgary Alberta, Canada, T3E 0B4, and on the Company website, www.nxtenergy.com.
 
 
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ITEM 16C. 
PRINCIPAL ACCOUNTANT FEES AND SERVICES
 
The following table sets forth the aggregate audit fees, audit-related fees, tax fees of our principal accountants and all other fees billed for products and services provided by our principal accountants for each of the fiscal years ended December 31, 2020 and 2019.
 
 
 
2020
 
 
 2019
 
Audit fees
 $176,550 
 $114,000 
Audit-related fees
  60,455 
  46,000 
Tax fees
  9,041 
  18,340 
Total fees
  246,046 
  178,340 
 
Audit Committee’s Pre-approval Policies and Procedures
 
Our Audit Committee nominates and engages our independent auditors to audit our financial statements. Our Audit Committee also requires management to obtain the Audit Committee’s approval on a case-by-case basis before engaging our independent auditors to provide any audit or permitted non-audit services to the Company or any of our subsidiaries. All fees shown have been pre-approved by the Audit Committee.
 
ITEM 16D. 
EXEMPTIONS FROM THE LISTING STANDARDS FOR AUDIT COMMITTEES
 
Not applicable.
 
ITEM 16E. 
PURCHASES OF EQUITY SECURITIES BY THE ISSUER AND AFFILIATED PURCHASERS
 
PeriodTotal Number of Shares PurchasedAverage Price Paid per SharesTotal Number of Shares Purchased as Part of Publicly Announced Plans or ProgramsMaximum Number (or Approximate Dollar Value) of Shares that May Yet Be Purchased Under the Plans or Programs
November 15, 2019 – December 9, 2019
 
4,166,667
 
$0.30
 
4,166,667
 
0
 
 
 
Targeted Issuer Bid
 
Between November 15, 2019 (the "TIB Commencement Date") and December 9, 2019 (the "TIB Completion Date"), NXT purchased for cancellation an aggregate of 4,166,667 Common Shares, representing approximately 6.08% of the 68,573,558 Common Shares outstanding as at the TIB Commencement Date. The purchase price of $0.30 per Common Share represented a discount of approximately 22.9% relative to the market price of $0.389 per Common Share as at the TIB Commencement Date. Gross proceeds received by AGV totaled approximately $1,250,000, representing approximately 6.1% of the Company's market capitalization of approximately $26,675,114 as at the TIB Commencement Date.
 
The terms of the Targeted Issuer Bid also provided that the 3,421,648 Warrants expired effective October 31, 2019, and that certain deadlines under the Co-operation Agreement be extended. AGV's registered ownership in the Company was reduced from 10,264,946 Common Shares and 3,421,648 Warrants, representing, on a fully diluted basis, approximately 20.0% of the 68,573,558 issued and outstanding Common Shares as at the TIB Commencement Date, to 6,098,279 Common Shares and nil Warrants, representing approximately 9.5% of the 64,406,891 issued and outstanding Common Shares as at the TIB Completion Date.
 
 
 
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By strategically acquiring its Common Shares for cancellation in a private transaction at a discount to the then current market price, the Company improved the equity position of its other shareholders and provided AGV with additional funds necessary to continue advancing the common objectives of the parties under the Co-operation Agreement, while also avoiding a substantial decrease in the market price and liquidity of the Common Shares reasonably expected if AGV were to sell a substantial portion of its equity position into the open market.
 
The Targeted Issuer Bid was exempt from the formal valuation and disinterested shareholder approval requirements typically applicable to related party transactions under applicable securities laws as neither the fair market value of the Common Shares (approximately $1,620,833) nor the consideration received by AGV for the Common Shares (approximately $1,250,000) exceeded 25% of the Company's market capitalization at the TIB Commencement Date (approximately $26,675,114).
 
ITEM 16F. 
CHANGE IN REGISTRANT’S CERTIFYING ACCOUNTANT
 
Not applicable.
 
ITEM 16G. 
CORPORATE GOVERNANCE
 
Not applicable.
 
ITEM 16H. 
MINE SAFETY DISCLOSURE
 
Not applicable.
 
PART III
ITEM 17. 
FINANCIAL STATEMENTS
 
The Company’s consolidated financial statements and related notes are prepared in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles and included in Item 18 to this annual report.
 
ITEM 18. 
FINANCIAL STATEMENTS
 
The Company’s consolidated financial statements and related notes have been prepared in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles.
 
 
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ITEM 19. 
EXHIBITS
 
EXHIBIT INDEX
Exhibit No.
 
Description
 
Articles of Incorporation of Auric Mining Corporation as filed with the Nevada Secretary of State on September 27, 1994 (incorporated by reference to Exhibit 3.1 to the Registration Statement on Form 10 filed on June 29, 1998)
Amendment to Articles of Incorporation of Auric Mining Corporation as filed with the Nevada Secretary of State on February 23, 1996 (incorporated by reference to Exhibit 3.1 to the Registration Statement on Form 10 filed on June 29, 1998)
Certificate of Amendment to Articles of Incorporation of Pinnacle Oil International, Inc. as filed with the Nevada Secretary of State on April 1, 1998 (incorporated by reference to Exhibit 3.3 to the Registration Statement on Form 10 filed on June 29, 1998)
Certificate of Amendment to Articles of Incorporation of Pinnacle Oil International, Inc. as filed with the Nevada Secretary of State on June 13, 2000 (incorporated by reference to Exhibit 3.4 to our Amendment No. 1 to the Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 1999 as filed on July 28, 2000)
Articles of Amendment of Energy Exploration Technologies Inc. as filed with the province of Alberta, Canada on September 22, 2008 (incorporated by reference to Exhibit 1.8 to our Annual Report on Form 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2008 as filed on June 29, 2009)
Amendment to the Articles of NXT Energy Solutions Inc. (incorporated by reference to Item V of Exhibit 99.1 to Form 6-K as filed on September 20, 2013)
NXT Energy Solutions Inc. By-Law No. 1 (incorporated by reference to Schedule “D” to Exhibit 99.2 to Form 6-K as filed on September 20, 2013)
Description of Securities
Form of Indemnification Agreement between NXT Energy Solutions Inc. and each of its Directors and Executive Officers (incorporated by reference to Exhibit 4.6 to our Annual Report on Form 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2013 as filed on April 30, 2014)
SFD® Technology Ownership Agreement dated December 31, 2006 (incorporated by reference to Exhibit 99.4 to Form 6-K as filed on January 12, 2007)
Technology Transfer Agreement dated December 31, 2006 (incorporated by reference to Exhibit 99.6 to Form 6-K as filed on January 12, 2007)
List of Subsidiaries (incorporated by reference to Exhibit 8.1 to our Annual Report on Form 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2013 as filed on April 30, 2014)
Code of Conduct and Business Ethics (incorporated by reference to Exhibit 11.1 to our Annual Report on Form 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2013 as filed on April 30, 2014)
Rule 13a-14(a)/15d-14(a) Certification of Chief Executive Officer and President
Rule 13a-14(a)/15d-14(a) Certification of VP Finance and Chief Financial Officer
Section 1350 Certification of Chief Executive Officer and President
Section 1350 Certification of VP Finance and Chief Financial Officer
Consolidated Financial Statements and Audit report of KPMG LLP for the year ended December 31, 2020
Consent of KPMG LLP
Management’s Discussion and Analysis for the year ended December 31, 2020
Management’s Discussion and Analysis for the year ended December 31, 2019
 
 
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SIGNATURES
 
The registrant hereby certifies that it meets all of the requirements for filing on Form 20-F and that it has duly caused and authorized the undersigned to sign this annual report on its behalf.
 
 
NXT Energy Solutions Inc.
 
 
 
By: /s/ George Liszicasz
       George Liszicasz
       Director, Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President
 
Dated: April 30, 2021
 
 
 
 
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