PM: No refinery discussions with Indian company

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Petrotrin. – File photo by Angelo Marcelle

THE Prime Minister has said there has not been any discussion between Government and Indian company Reliance Industries Ltd with respect to the former Petrotrin refinery in Pointe-a-Pierre.

Dr Rowley made the comment during a news conference at Piarco International Airport on May 19.

On May 15, Rowley arrived in Mumbai, India, on the invitation of the largest private sector corporation in India – Reliance Industries Ltd.

Reliance is also a dominant figure in the global energy industry.

On May 16, Rowley and his delegation was given an extensive tour of Reliance’s refining and petrochemical complex in Jamnagar. The tour also included in-depth presentations on the company’s drive towards new energy production, including solar energy and biofuels.

Rowley was asked by the media if the refinery was discussed or if Reliance had any interest in it.

“As a matter of fact. All that was mentioned was that we do have a refinery. RFPs (requests for proposals). We expect sometime in the not too distant future to be able to look at the proposals.”

He said if Reliance was interested they could submit a proposal.

But Rowley added, “I don’t know that is a focus at this point in time.”

He said Reliance’s business model “is based on bringing in raw material to what is in effect, the largest refinery in the world.”

Reliance, Rowley continued, are not short of refining capacity, refining 1.4 million barrels of oil per day at his facility in Jamnagar.

At a news conference on May 6 at his ministry’s office at Tower C of the Port of Spain International Waterfront Centre, Energy Minister Stuart Young said Government remains optimistic about a possible sale of the refinery which was mothballed in 2018 when Petrotrin was restructured into Trinidad Petroleum Holdings Ltd.