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Petrotrin eyes oil spike from new licences
Petrotrin president Khalid Hassanali yesterday predicted that Monday’s signing of two exploration and production (Public Petroleum Rights) licences by the state-owned company will result in increased production of crude oil. Petrotrin signed Licences for the TNA (Trinidad Northern Areas) Block, which comprises 75,737 hectares, located off the Southwest Peninsula of Trinidad, and the North Marine Block, which comprises roughly 20,572 hectares.
Present at the Signing Ceremony were the Minister of Energy and Energy Affairs, Senator the Honourable Kevin Ramnarine, Petrotrin Chairman, Mr. Lindsay Gillette and the Commissioner of State Lands, Mr. Kumar Koonoolal. Also present
In an interview with Guardian, Hassanali said: “I am optimistic that we would increase our production through the minimum work programme that we are undertaking.”
He added that production is not only expected to increase due to the licences but due to the Jubilee find located in the Southwest Soldado development. In 2012, due to protests by workers, the company suffered millions in losses but, Hassanali is not daunted that protests from workers would hinder the company’s goals of achieving increased production.
“We had an interfaith service at the refinery this morning and tomorrow (Thursday) we are having a similar interfaith Thanksgiving service in Trinmar, Point Fortin. I feel these things, (the services) would join with us in giving thanks as a positive sign.”
Hassanali, referring to the blocks as “existing blocks” and not old blocks, said: “Those two blocks have the biggest potential, I would say ,in the country to increase our production and our reserves. Although there are oilfields in those two blocks, there is still room for a lot of developments in those two blocks. While it is the renewal of an old licence, we are also renewing our commitments to develop those blocks even more.”
Asked whether Petrotrin has the revenue to develop those blocks Hassanali said: “Petrotrin is a profitable company, our gas revenues are about $40 billion per year. While we have our ups and downs because of the market as well as other things, we do generate enough cash from our operations in general, to be able to fund some of our development plans.
He added that: “The rest of our development plans we are going to have to fund from borrowing. The Jubilee find I think is very bankable. The Southwest Soldado development is very bankable as well some of these other developments we will be funding from our operations. As soon as we can demonstrate through during exploration and appraisal wells I believe we can fund the development further,” he said.
The Ministry of Energy and Petrotrin are expected to announce a next bid round on land. The announcement is expected to be made at the upcoming Energy conference.
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