Venezuelan Oil Minister Pedro Tellechea (left), with Venezuelan vice president Delcy Rodríguez (centre), and Energy Minister Stuart Young (right) at the signing ceremony for the Dragon gas field licence in Caracas, Venezuela on Thursday. Photo: Stuart Young’s Facebook page. –
ENERGY Minister Stuart Young says the securing of the licence for Venezuela’s Dragon field is the best Christmas gift for the nation.
In a brief Facebook post on Sunday, Young said, “Licence from the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to explore, develop, produce and export gas from the Dragon field to Trinidad and Tobago signed and delivered. Merry Christmas, Trinidad and Tobago.”
Around 9 pm on Thursday, in Caracas, Young signed the final documents that gave the green light for natural gas from Dragon to flow to TT.
The Prime Minister and Young explained the significance of this development at a news conference at the Diplomatic Centre, St Ann’s on Friday.
In a Facebook post on Saturday, Young said, “The acquisition of the 30-year licence to explore, produce and export natural gas from the Venezuelan Dragon gas field to TT which will benefit the people of Venezuela and the people of TT for decades to come.”
“The restructuring of ALNG (Atlantic LNG), which resulted in better shareholding and better revenue for TT, as well as access for third-party gas for the first time, opens up new possibilities and opportunities for additional investments in gas exploration and production.”
Previously, Government through the National Gas Company (NGC) only had shares of ten and 11 per cent in ALNG trains one and four.
Under the new arrangement, NGC has a ten per cent shareholding in all four ALNG trains.
Young said because of these two historic, monumental and unprecedented deals, “TT’s future is brighter and offers more hope and positive potential.”
On Friday, Dr Rowley said, “This is a historic development on a historic day for the people of Venezuela and TT. While it is not a boom, it is a brighter future, as of today.”
He also spoke of efforts made by the PNM since returning to office in September 2015 to repair the damage he said the UNC-led People’s Partnership (PP) coalition government had done to the energy sector.
Rowley said that damage included natural gas curtailments, no new gas contracts being negotiated, and the NGC facing $8 billion in claims from energy companies.
Rowley and Young said that apart from Dragon and ALNG’s restructuring, Government is working on several other energy initiatives.