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Don’t let gas finds change T&T’s focus

Wednesday, June 7, 2017
Chamber on bpTT announcement

The T&T Chamber yesterday welcomed news of recent gas discoveries by bpTT, which the energy company said last week could unlock approximately two trillion cubic feet (tcf) of gas from its Savannah and Macadamia exploration wells.

The Chamber said that when the find is monetised by 2020/21, it would likely translate into major social benefits accruing to the people of Trinidad and Tobago.

But the private sector representative body cautioned that the population of the country must resist getting sidetracked by short-term successes or lose the drive to continue diversifying the local economy.

“While the prospects are quite favourable with improvements in our gas supply, it is sobering to note that the recent discoveries do not signal the immediate end to the revenue-generating challenge our country is currently experiencing.”

The body added that while it did not wish to detract from the importance of the discoveries, it wished to ensure that as a nation, “we do not lose sight of our larger national goals and objectives towards a transformed and diversified economy.”

The T&T Chamber said: “While the discoveries and subsequent production activity will undoubtedly foster foreign direct investment in the upstream, we must work determinedly towards change in the downstream sectors and industries.

“Be it in business, government or the labour movement, we can at times become preoccupied with short-term successes that provide mere transitory relief. The T&T Chamber is of the firm view that on this occasion and going forward, nothing must distract us from our long-term commitment to a transformed economy.

The organisation said there is a great deal more to be done and it hopes that soon it would be commending other stakeholders for significant advances along the road to economic transformation and diversification.

At all costs, we must avoid being lulled into complacency or sidetracked by short-term successes.