May 24, 2022 News
…if country is interested then the conversation should take place — PM Rowley
By Gary Eleazar
Kaieteur News – Dr. Keith Rowley, Prime Minister of Guyana’s closest Caribbean Community (CARICOM) oil producing nation, Trinidad and Tobago (T&T), has publicly confirmed that once the lease or sale arrangement currently taking place with regard it’s Petroleum Refinery (Petrotrin) then the facility can be made available to process Guyana’s oil if the country is interested.
The confirmation was made by Dr. Rowley on his return to T&T on Sunday last during a press briefing for that country’s media corps. He was asked to clarify his country’s position given that earlier in the day during a presser in Guyana he did not give a definitive response when asked about the possibility of the country using Petrotrin to process its entitlements.
According to Dr. Rowley, “I didn’t want to get into too much of a discussion in that environment because we have here in T&T a process underway and that process is that we have gone out publicly and we had I think three or four interested parties.”
With this in mind, he reminded that in his latest report to that country’s parliament on the issue he had outlined that Petrotrin was currently in its evaluation process and has since identified one company to move forward with.
He was adamant it was for this reason he did not want to go in depth into the issue while in Guyana.
Recalling the reasons for the closure of Petrotrin, Dr. Rowley pointed to the inadequate supply of oil to be sourced locally, which led to that country resorting to importing as much as 120,000 barrels of oil daily in order to keep the refinery open.
This, he said, came at a loss to the country since under that arrangement T&T was in fact losing as much as US$15 on each barrel imported.
“So in that situation, we closed the refining operations of our involvement in the oil business and we always said, as we had just done, if there is anybody who has a supply of oil or who can access a supply of oil and such person or entity would like to use the refinery, we can make an arrangement.”
It was in this vein the Prime Minister confirmed that, “if Guyana has oil and Guyana is interested with someone who we have selected here or are selecting, then those conversations should take place.”
He did express confidence that the conversations regarding the refining of Guyana’s oil will evolve.
According to Dr. Rowley, it all has to do with a refinery which exists and which can with some not so insignificant effort be brought back into operation if an entity with a supply of oil were to be found.
The T&T Prime Minister was adamant, if any can source the oil in order to re-open the refinery, “we would be happy.”
He told his press corps, “we always would be happy if the refinery is operating…It doesn’t have to be a government refinery to be a contributor to our economy but it all turns on an availability of oil which will not cost the people of T&T significant losses.”
Guyana has since collected its first entitlement of oil from the Liza II field in the Stabroek Block and has been selling crude on the world market.
Senior Minister within the Office of the President with responsibility for Finance, Dr. Ashni Singh had in January, during his Budget presentation, outlined that with two oil ships on schedule to be working simultaneously this year in the Stabroek Block, Guyana’s oil sector is expected to rake in over US$950M for 2022.
According to Dr. Singh, it is anticipated that there will be 94 lifts from the Stabroek Block, 13 of which will be government’s lifts.
The second Floating Production Storage and Offloading Vessel for the Liza II Operations commenced earlier this year with Guyana already uplifting entitlements.
Dr. Singh said production is expected from both Liza Destiny and Unity oil ships, and the rate of production for 2022 is expected to be approximately 257,000 bpd on average. As such, the subsector is projected to grow by 96.7 percent in 2022.
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