Venezuela and Trinidad Sign Landmark Energy Agreements

Venezuela and Trinidad and Tobago signed three agreements Monday focusing on oil and gas production.

By Jeanette Charles
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Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago Keith C. Rowley (left) and Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro (right) (Prensa Presidencial).
Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago Keith C. Rowley (left) and Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro (right) (Prensa Presidencial).

Los Angeles, December 6th 2016 (Venezuelanalysis.com) - The governments of Venezuela and Trinidad and Tobago signed energy development agreements Monday in Caracas. The Caribbean based bilateral agreements come days after Venezuela celebrated the Organization of Oil Producing Countries (OPEC) deal resulting in a production cut of 32.5 million barrels of oil a day.

“We are signing three agreements, working in our maritime territory with gas blocks, sharing these blocks and reaching agreements for exploitation together", confirmed Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, characterizing the gas and oil energy accords as “a win-win relationship for both countries”.

Maduro as well Venezuelan Oil Minister Eulogio del Pino received Trinidad and Tobago’s Prime Minister Keith C. Rowley in Miraflores Palace.

The first agreement establishes a project that will supply natural Venezuelan gas to Trinidad and Tobago via an interconnection through the Dragon-CIGMA (Dragon Field) export gas pipeline to the CIGMA complex near Guiria, in the Gulf of Paria, Sucre state.

This agreement builds on a memorandum of understanding between the two Caribbean nations signed earlier this year in which Trinidad and Tobago agreed to purchase gas from Venezuela’s offshore Dragon Field. The agreement was signed by former Trinidadian Energy Minister Nicole Olivierre and his Venezuelan counterpart Minister Del Pino.

The Dragon gas fields are said to have combined oil reserves of 12-13 trillion cubic feet (tcf) exceeding Trinidad and Tobago’s gas reserves of 11.5 tcf, according to the June 2016 BP’s Statistical Review of World Energy reports Curacao Chronicles.

Secondly, Venezuela signed an agreement between Venezuelan oil company PDVSA and Shell Venezuela to reduce gas flaring following concerns in Monagas state.

Both parties, PDVSA and Shell, also signed a memorandum to begin negotiations to obtain financial resources for the PDVSA-Shell Petroregional del Lago crude oil joint production project in Maracaibo Lake’s Urdaneta West field, Zulia state.

"A fourth agreement will be signed and announced when its translation into Spanish is complete," Maduro confirmed.  

Before departing for Caracas, Prime Minister Rowley expressed, "[the gas shortage facing Trinidad and Tobago] in the not-too-distant future, will be dealt with by a sustained and sufficient supply coming from the Venezuelan fields which will be processed here and supply us with an export product into our current and other markets."   

"The whole intention is that our operations here in Trinidad and Tobago can have a much longer future," emphasized Rowley.

PDSVA stated on October 3, that the Dragon field will have “early production of 300 million standard cubic feet of gas per day (mmscfd) from four wells. This production will be doubled in the future with the installation of an offshore platform.”

Minister Del Pino likewise confirmed in October that export agreements were being negotiated with other Caribbean nations in addition to Trinidad including: Aruba, Curacao and Jamaica.

In the last year, Venezuela has signed a variety of agreements with its neighbor Trinidad and Tobago in food imports, tourism and medicine.