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Trinidad warns of financing constraints on oil and gas






By Canute James / Argus

Petroleumworld 11 10 2021

LNG exporter Trinidad and Tobago is warning of economic repercussions from growing pressure on international banks to stop financing oil and gas exploration.

"For Trinidad and Tobago, that is a dagger aimed at our heart," prime minister Keith Rowley said on 6 November

upon his return from the Cop 26 climate summit in Glasgow.

"We are in the business of hydrocarbons and will remain there as long as there is a market in the world."

The country's economy is in danger as the world moves to cleaner sources of energy, but it will take "quite some time" for renewable energy to prevail, Rowley said.

It is in Trinidad's interest "to join other countries and carry the conversation that gas is in fact the cleaner among the fuels available at this time," he said.

The Caribbean state of 1.4mn people is among the world's biggest polluters per capita "so we have our work cut out for us," Rowley said, alluding to its extensive gas-fired industrial base, including petrochemicals and fertilizers.

It was important for his country to tell Cop 26 that although the economy is based on hydrocarbons production, it intends to work towards reducing emissions, he said.

But while moving on projects such as the production of green hydrogen for petrochemical production, the government is going ahead with hydrocarbon exploration agreements with energy companies such as BP and Shell, he said.

"We have had very good responses from Shell and BP and significant investments are committed to keeping Trinidad and Tobago on the production side of things."

The country's gas production has been falling since 2010 and in January-June reached 2.73 Bcf/d, 20pc less than a year earlier, according to the energy ministry.

LNG production in January-August totaled 11.12mn m³, 38pc less than a year earlier, according to the central bank.

The government is currently considering offers from three foreign companies to reactivate the 165,000 b/d Pointe-a-Pierre refinery. The plant was closed in November 2018 partly because of declining crude production which now averages 57,000 b/d, according to the energy ministry.


By Canute James from Argus Media James 11 08 2021



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