Trinidad Govt seeks advice on Dragon Field gas plan

Minister of National Secu-rity Stuart Young responds to a question during yesterday’s Senate sitting.

(Trinidad Guardian) Gov­ern­ment is seek­ing ad­vice to as­cer­tain the ef­fect on its Drag­on Field gas plan of the US Gov­ern­ment’s sanc­tions on Venezuela’s Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) oil com­pa­ny, Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Min­is­ter Stu­art Young has said.

Young con­firmed this in the Sen­ate re­ply­ing to Op­po­si­tion ques­tions af­ter the US this week dropped sanc­tions on PDVSA, in­creas­ing pres­sure on the em­bat­tled Nico­las Maduro ad­min­is­tra­tion. The US is sup­port­ing Venezue­lan Na­tion­al As­sem­bly head Juan Guai­do who de­clared him­self Pres­i­dent last week.

As in­sta­bil­i­ty con­tin­ued in T&T’s neigh­bour, the US State De­part­ment al­so in­creased its trav­el ad­vi­so­ry on Venezuela to the high­est lev­el, warn­ing cit­i­zens not to trav­el there due to “crime, civ­il un­rest, poor health in­fra­struc­ture, and ar­bi­trary ar­rest and de­ten­tion of US cit­i­zens. The US said it has lim­it­ed abil­i­ty to pro­vide emer­gency ser­vices to US cit­i­zens in Venezuela.

In the Sen­ate, Young re­ply­ing on the Drag­on Gas field project which T&T has with Venezuela, said: “The re­cent sanc­tions im­posed by the US on PDVSA are cur­rent­ly the sub­ject of ad­vice; we’re seek­ing ad­vice to un­der­stand how it may—and I em­pha­sise the word ‘may’—af­fect the Drag­on Field plan.”

“It’s very pre­ma­ture at this stage to say what, if any ef­fect it (sanc­tions) may have,” Young added. Last week, En­er­gy Min­is­ter Franklin Khan had con­firmed that the doc­u­ment which would make the Drag­on Field plan legal­ly bind­ing be­tween T&T and Venezuela hasn’t been signed yet al­though heads of agree­ment and an­oth­er doc­u­ment was done. Young al­so said that the Ce­dros Port will re­main closed in­def­i­nite­ly due to an over­flow­ing cesspit.

This has af­fect­ed the Ce­dros build­ing hous­ing Im­mi­gra­tion, Cus­toms and po­lice of­fi­cers. The Ce­dros port has been the en­try point to T&T for nu­mer­ous Venezue­lans over the years, and more­so re­cent­ly as ten­sions be­gan build­ing in Venezuela af­fect­ing that coun­try’s econ­o­my.

Young said his min­istry has asked the Works Min­istry’s En­gi­neer­ing Di­vi­sion to do an as­sess­ment of the cesspit prob­lem sit­u­a­tion and make rec­om­men­da­tions for rec­ti­fy­ing it.

He couldn’t say when the port would be re­opened since his min­istry is await­ing an as­sess­ment and rec­om­men­da­tion from the Works Min­istry.

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