A legal battle is brewing over the financial information provided to Parliament last week about payment made to attorneys by the Ministry of the Attorney General for legal and other technical/profe
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Loran Manatee nominees submitted
Energy and Energy Affairs Minister Kevin Ramnarine confirmed via e-mail that all the nominees for the directing and investment committees governing Loran Manatee have been received. “These are nominees from the governments of T&T and Venezuela, PDVSA (Venezuela’s state-owned oil company), Chevron T&T, Chevron Global and BG,” he explained, although he did not release the names. “We are speaking to the Venezuelans about a meeting in the first quarter of 2014,” the minister added.
The directing and investment committees are bilateral, joint entities that will take key decisions on where gas from Loran Manatee will land and how it will be monetised. Loran Manatee is one of three cross-border gas fields between Venezuela and T&T, with an estimated 10.25 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of gas, of which 26.25 per cent belong to T&T. The fields are in Block 6 on the T&T side and Block 2 on the Venezuelan side.
Venezuela’s Petroleum & Mines Minister Rafael Ramirez said last September that Venezuela intends to invest US$1.5 billion to build a 276 kilometre gas pipeline to land the gas, while T&T has said it has existing infrastructure in place but will wait for the development and marketing plans to be completed before making an announcement. The governance committees will formulate these plans. In Caracas on September 11, 2013, Ramnarine and Ramirez signed an agreement giving legal life to the governance committees.
The most powerful of the three is the directing committee, made up of representatives of both governments and the four companies involved—Chevron T&T, Chevron Global British Gas T&T and PDVSA. The second body is the investing committee, made up of the four companies and the third body is the executing entity, drawn from among the four companies. The members of the directing committee have voting rights in accordance with their title to natural gas under the production sharing contracts.
In Parliament, Ramnarine had said: “The voting rights are broken down as follows: government of T&T, 16.97 per cent; British Gas Trinidad and Tobago, 4.98 per cent; Chevron Trinidad and Tobago 4.98 per cent; Government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, 14.61 per cent; PDVSA, 35.65 per cent; and Chevron Global, 22.79 per cent. If you add them all together, you will get 99.99 and there is some rounding because I used two decimal places.”