PM: ALNG Train One not abandoned

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

File photo: An aerial view overlooking Heritage Petroleum storage tanks (left) and Atlantic LNG in Point Fortin. – Photo by Jeff K. Mayers

THE Prime Minister rejected claims being made in some quarters that Atlantic LNG’s (ALNG) Train One, which has been shut down since November 2020, will never be restarted. Dr Rowley did so in an opinion piece which was published in all three daily newspapers on Monday.

“Our job is to make whatever we have in Train One, equity or relationships, work for the benefit of the people of Trinidad and Tobago. That process is still underway. “

He added, “We as a Government, and certainly right-thinking people, cannot be the voices to take delight in nor cheer the news that Train One is no more.”

He reminded the population that in May 2019, “it was agreed with BP and Shell, at the highest levels, that we should look at a new structure for ALNG and the possibility of a unitised arrangement for the future, keeping TT in shareholding even as gas curtailment was signalling a possible end to Train One.”

Rowley said, “This again, was an unprecedented direction, that is to try to negotiate that LNG Trains with separate shareholdings and complex off take commercial contracts for the LNG be restructured into a unitised facility.”

There was an agreement amongst the parties to open discussions on a new and simplified structure across all trains and there began serious and protracted discussions for the future of ALNG.”

Rowley said, “The restructuring of ALNG is unprecedented and necessarily very complex, nevertheless we remain engaged and the work continues with TT doing what has to be done at every stage and every level to protect the interest of the people of TT and to give ourselves the best possible outcome in these challenging times and situations.”

Against this background, he continued, the teams from Government, NGC, BP and Shell have been in intense discussions and negotiations since the end of 2020, to date, with respect to the restructuring of Atlantic LNG.

“During our last meetings with BP and Shell in London late last year we set June 2022 as the date by which we will try to conclude these complex negotiations and hope that we can find agreement on the way forward.”

He said there were many engineering questions with respect to the exact future of Train One. Its connectivity to ALNG’s Trains Two to Four is also to be determined.

In this context, Rowley said, “It is imprudent to rely on ill-informed speculation and even suspicious commentaries that can affect our ability to successfully negotiate the country’s future in ALNG as we engage in the unprecedented, highly complex and challenging restructuring of our LNG business.”

He reiterated, “On this score it should be stated, for the hundredth time, that NGC did not spend $400 million on the Train One.” Last year, Rowley said, “A total of US$32 million ($217 million) was spent on turnaround and maintenance works (for Train One) in this billion dollar business.”

PUT IN BOX

Existing shareholder arrangements in ALNG’s four trains

Train One: Shell 46 &, BP 34 per cent, NGC ten per cent, CIC ten per cent.

Train Two: Shell 57.5 per cent, BP 42.5 per cent.

Train Three: Shell 57.5 per cent, BP 42.5 per cent.

Train Four: Shell 51.11 per cent, BP 37.78 per cent, NGC 11.11 per cent.