BPTT to invest $1.5 billion in Trinidad and Tobago this year

BP Trinidad & Tobago (BPTT) has reported that it will invest $1.5 billion in Trinidad and Tobago this year in spite of falling oil prices and declining revenue, BPTT Pres. Norman Christie said.

Speaking earlier this month at the annual conference of the Energy Chamber of Trinidad and Tobago in Port of Spain, Christie said BPTT would continue to invest as long as the Caribbean twin-island nation remained welcoming to investment.

“BPTT spent close to $1.5 billion in capital expenditures in 2015 and if the ‘above the surface’ conditions are right, we plan on spending more than that in 2016 despite the significant negative impact of prices on our earnings and cash flow,” Christie said.

Christie told the conference the BPTT was very optimistic that it still had a lot of resources in the Columbus basin offshore Trinidad and Tobago’s east coast, which has been heightened by its ocean-bottom cable seismic survey.

“I will reinforce again that we remain very positive about the remaining resource potential in our acreage. As you have heard many times in this conference: ‘Below the surface things look cautiously optimistic’ but above the surface we have some work to do to ensure that as a country we continue to incentivize the development of our natural resources and at the right pace.”

Christie also addressed the current shortage of gas on the island blaming it on insufficient investments in a timely fashion and warning that the industry could not allow this to happen again.

Christie said, “Although we remain optimistic, I know that gas consumers in the downstream and Atlantic are today experiencing the pain of insufficient gas supply. This is as a direct result of a slowdown in upstream investments and drilling activity a few years ago, exacerbated by maintenance activity. No matter how tough the environment gets we must always learn the lessons of the past and try not to repeat mistakes.”

Christie said BPTT’s aggressive drilling program continues with work on development of Juniper field, future field developments, and plans for exploration drilling.

“We will maintain our high investment levels once the country’s welcome mat stays out. And, we are not alone. It is encouraging to hear that despite low energy prices, there is much activity in the upstream including in the deep water. And the government’s positive discussions with Venezuela can potentially lead to increased opportunities for both countries. These future focused plans are just what our industry needs to boost confidence,” Christie said.

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