Category Archives: lng/energy analysis

Lunatic denial is terminal

Those who don’t earn foreign exchange/hard currency in T&T insist they are entitled to spend it as if it is their personal property. In a social order where the significant earners of hard currency are energy companies and the government collects its share of this hard currency through taxes and rents on the energy companies the talking heads bump their gums to talk about diversification  without spelling out if these non-energy pursuits will at least earn the for-ex they consume. There is a vast difference between creating jobs utilising for-ex you don’t earn and cannot earn and creating jobs whilst being self-sufficient in for-ex needs and paying taxes and rents to the government in for-ex. The local manufacturers are a long way from this state of operation and they must learn from the Jamaican enterprises that are now globalised and self-sufficient in for-ex consumption such as Jamaica Broilers Group. The Caricom market must now be replaced by North Atlantic markets then you can speak of manufacturers before that then you must speak of pampered assemblers living off subsidised inputs and a captive market closed by tariff and non-tariff barriers. Learn from the strategic plan of GraceKennedy. But the abiding reality is that the for-ex collected by the state overwhelmingly comes from the LNG exporters and the world LNG markets are in glut which is expected to deepen in the next five years as new LNG plants come alive in the next five years. It is estimated that by 2021 25% of global LNG production will be homeless as it seeks buyers with the impact on LNG prices being obvious. The May 2016 Asia LNG spot price is USD 4.20 per mmbtu and for June 2016 USD 4.00 per mmbtu. Of the 17 LNG cargoes purchased by YPF of Argentina for mid-year delivery LNG traders dominated the suppliers to the detriment of energy companies because LNG producers are selling homeless production to traders for the cash flow rather than hold stock and seek out buyers. In six cargoes sold to CFE of Mexico traders won 3 of 6 supply contracts. The word among traders is that contracts for June and July shipment were all sold for below USD 4.00 per mmbtu. This reality means that the government of T&T cannot defend a TTD exchange rate below TT7.00 to USD 1.00 without running down the for-ex reserves to  dangerous levels and 9 billion USD is no nest egg given the rate entitled citizens love to blow it at. Learn from the experience of other energy economies that the measures announced simply do not protect the reserves in a LNG market reality we are faced with in the next five years and failure to protect is not an option as Haiti beckons.

http://www.brecorder.com/top-news/world/289621-global-lng-prices-retreat-on-soft-demand.html

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-03-24/global-war-for-gas-market-share-claims-40-billion-lng-casualty

http://ir.kindermorgan.com/press-release/all/kinder-morgan-purchase-100-shells-equity-interest-elba-lng-liquefaction-joint-vent

T&T’s national secret: the LNG business

The LNG business in T&T is wrapped in secrecy as if it’s a covert dark op. You learn more about the LNG business in T&T from sources external of T&T than from where the business operates from so much for transparency in a democracy. At this time in the history of T&T where the energy paradigm that fashioned our entire economy and consumption patterns is in its death throes as a new energy paradigm sweeps the world we continue to be inundated with propaganda and blissful silence. The business guardian of January 10, 2016 printed an article titled “Atlantic confident about LNG’s future” which again is another instance of the play on the people of T&T. Who says Atlantic’s future is our future? A globalised transnational seeks its own interests and when those interests and T&T’s collide will they supplant theirs for ours? Like duh neo-liberal capitalism is not a charity. What the article didn’t tell us even though Atlantic said it before is that Atlantic says it cannot speak for Train 4 as it’s governed by a different structure where Atlantic is just a processor of gas to LNG supplied by companies and the LNG belongs to the supplier of gas not Atlantic therefore Atlantic cannot sell it internationally. So when Atlantic chooses to speak locally we remain ignorant of what is going on with LNG exported from Train 4 because the gas suppliers simply disclose nothing. In the said article Atlantic says in fact the LNG from trains 1 to 3 are sold on long term contracts but as to expiry dates of these contracts silence. As to the impact of the present LNG market on these contracts silence since we know at least one contract for train 1 expired and LNG was sourced from Yemen replacing Atlantic. In the article Atlantic says that they have destination flexibility in their contracts for their LNG. What does this mean for T&T’s revenue collection and how do we as a nation in these guava times benefit from this. Does it mean that LNG is sent on a long term contract to Gas Natural of Spain of which Repsol is a major shareholder who then resells the gas and T&T does not share in the profit of this reselling play? In the article Atlantic says that 51% of its LNG is sold in South America but according to the trade journals the major buyers of LNG in this region buy subject to demand through tender bids and short term contracts based on fixed load amounts. When there is no demand there is no tender. Newsday of January 19, 2016 in an article titled “Energy Minister says use it or lose it” reported that the Minister of Energy indicated that the the arrangement where the profit earned from the sale of diverted LNG cargoes was shared on a 50/50 basis is now up in the air. The Minister asked the question if diverted cargoes to South America were being passed to arms of the shareholders of Atlantic via transfer pricing who then sold the diverted cargoes thereby evading paying to T&T our share of the profits earned via diversion. We all should call for an answer from Atlantic. Wait on it. We all must now understand that this not a specific aspect of the so-called commodity cycle T&T is in. A new energy paradigm with a new brand of geopolitics is battling a falsified energy/geopolitics paradigm for hegemony and T&T is on the losing side. This new paradigm is more than US shale gas and oil it’s also Chinese shale oil and gas, Argentinian shale oil and gas and the inclusion of the huge gas resources of Iran as the South Pars fields into the world energy markets. The dinosaurs of the old paradigm as the house of saud and the angry white dinosaurs of US politics will rant and rave and bay at the moon and end up as the Luddites of the first industrial revolution. T&T live with the reality and deal with it this one denial will not postpone.

T&T’s Energy Reality Today

The foreign exchange we love to spend in T&T is predominantly derived from the taxes etc that the energy sector pays to the state and the largest single source of foreign exchange is derived from companies involved in the production of gas to LNG and the export of LNG. T&T has been faced since 2010 with falling volumes of natural gas supplied to the sector that utilises gas as feedstock and a glut of LNG on world markets appeared in 2015. What then is the reality of LNG in 2016? Cheniere Energy at Sabine Pass in the US is presently producing LNG and the first shipment will be delivered to British Gas (BG). Three nuclear reactors shuttered in Japan since Fukushima have either been re-started or will be re-started negatively impacting Asian spot LNG prices which was below 7USD for February 2016 delivery. China and South Korea are not taking up the slack created by Japan’s noted lowering of its LNG purchases and Asian supply continues to expand. Qatar took the decision to protect market share in light of Asian realities for LNG by setting the precedent to drastically change the terms of the 25 year contract between RasGas and Petronet of  India by cutting the contract price of its LNG by half and ending the take or pay clause. It is reported that Petronet has already indicated to its Australian suppliers that it wants a similar deal the cascade effect. Qatar’s move is the equivalent for LNG of the House of Saud’s move in oil markets and it will run through LNG markets as castor oil and send T&T to the latrine. LNG from Asia and the US seeking markets will then end up in Europe and given the willingness to protect market share by any means necessary we can then expect blood letting and further price pressures downward. The gas producers of T&T can then continue to demand a brand new gas structure in T&T and hold out waiting for the government to surrender because politicians have a 5 year vision horizon at best. The last government did nothing hoping for the best and that inaction did not bear fruit. The present government is even more precariously placed and the global actors wait. The gas supply in 2015 actually worsened and the news is not good as the failure of BG’s Starfish project. The question arises if the fall in LNG production and exports justified by a shortfall in gas feedstock given the nature of the world LNG markets is in keeping with the global strategy of the gas/LNG producers of T&T?  Where are our LNG markets today as exports to the US and Spain shrink?The gas/LNG paradigm of T&T is then falsified by the evolution of gas and LNG markets of the world. Such is life deal with it.

http://www.worldoil.com/news/2015/12/22/american-lng-exporters-turn-to-europe-as-asian-demand-sputters

http://www.ogj.com/articles/2015/12/bptt-gas-production-falls-20-to-1-76-bcfd-during-2015.html

https://in.finance.yahoo.com/news/lng-gas-pricing-bonanza-qatar-220800324.html

http://www.business-standard.com/article/companies/rasgas-contract-revision-to-boost-gas-utility-firms-116010100612_1.html

http://www.sharekhan.com/stock-market/news/Petronet-LNG-is-set-to-renegotiate-Austr/e2d2357a-6350-4764-8347-8192ad334b31/MustKnowNews/161/News.htm

The Price T&T must pay for Loran-Manatee gas

On the 6 November 2015 on the Spanish language  web site of PDVSA a report was posted titled “Presidente Maduro crea comision presidential para industrializacion del gas” In which President Maduro states that the model of spending billions of USD to erect LNG trains utilising Venezuela’s gas resources is not an acceptable use of Venezuela’s gas resources. Venezuela’s gas must be the feedstock for the creation of a new phase of the industrialisation of Venezuela and the generation of electricity. President Maduro insisted that Venezuela must learn from the Bolivia model of gas utilisation. The core of the Bolivia model is a former President of Bolivia literally gave away Bolivia’s gas to Brazil and Argentina thereby creating a gas fed industrial complex in Brazil where the natural gas liquids of Bolivian gas was extracted in Brazil and continues to feed Brazilian chemical industries without any return to Bolivia whilst the masses of Bolivia remain trapped in poverty. This is in addition to the use of the dry gas by Brazilian industries. President Evo Morales of Bolivia has engaged in an ongoing engagement with Brazil to change this exploitative gas contract but Brazil insists on the sanctity of the supply contract. The masses of Bolivia have then been robbed of equitable returns on their gas and moreso of a wasting natural resource capable of raising their standard of living. President Maduro in citing the lessons of the Bolivia model has sent a message to those in T&T long desirous of Loran gas being fed into Atlantic. The question is can the structures that govern the gas to LNG process in T&T afford Maduro the political capital he desperately needs in Venezuela? In the Business Express of 18 November 2015 an interview with the Ambassador of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to T&T was printed. The Ambassador stated that Venezuela wants to be T&T’s best friend. That no Venezuelan gas will be sent to T&T for processing before production commences on the Loran-Manatee field and gas from other Venezuelan gas fields can follow but it is a matter of trust between Venezuela and T&T. And Venezuelan gas can be processed at Atlantic via the stake NGC has in Atlantic. But to-date no time frame for production from the Loran-Manatee field is forthcoming. Venezuela knowing the gas supply crisis T&T faces is now making it clear the terms of endearment in order to access Loran-Manatee gas. Can T&T dance cheek to cheek with Venezuela and maintain its  traditional role in the Southern Caribbean with the USA? Clearly Venezuela is now using the gas supply crisis to drive a wedge between hegemon and client state. Is the present government willing to pay the price? Clearly the previous government left the gas crisis intact rather than dance cheek to cheek. Did Venezuela want to dance cheek to cheek with the previous regime?

Gas supply crisis in Trinidad and Tobago and the Loran-Manatee field

The present government of T&T has placed in the public domain the nature of the gas supply crisis and the decision of the Maduro government of Venezuela to process Venezuelan gas of the Loran field in Atlantic into LNG. The opposition has long insisted that Loran-Manatee gas can fill the gas supply shortfall in T&T. But there is a deliberate confluence of opposing realities in the discourse for there is T&T’s share of the cross border gas and there is Venezuela’s share and the opposition signed on the dotted line to grant operatorship of the cross-border field to Venezuela. T&T cannot realise its share of the gas save and until Venezuela develops the field and begins production and to do this requires a series of agreements be signed between PDVSA the agent of the Venezuelan state and Chevron as none presently exist. Agreements for the Loran field must then abide by the Organic Hydrocarbon Law and be impacted by the internal politics of the PSUV and the  Great Patriotic Pole. Under the hydrocarbon law Venezuela’s share of the gas of the Loran-Manatee field belongs to Venezuela to utilise to the benefit of all Venezuelans. If it is then legal under the law to send Venezuelan gas to Atlantic in T&T to process into LNG then that LNG belongs to Venezuela and an agreement has to be worked out how Chevron is going to share in the value chain. It is illegal to hand all of the LNG to Chevron for Chevron to dispose of as the agent of PDVSA. That is why the original project conceptualisation called for LNG trains in Sucre state built by PDVSA. Why then has the Maduro government at this time played this card? The answer is called Exxon Mobil and the Essequibo border dispute. Note the full court press of Venezuela in the PetroCaribe member states. What must be noted is that as of today I have seen no announcement of the Maduro government’s decision to pipe Venezuelan gas to T&T in the Venezuelan media. What they will say is that they are researching the possibility of doing so and they have in fact said so. The feasibility is yet to be confirmed. Another play unleashed. October 27, 2015 The private media in T&T continues to play mind games given the gas supply crisis that has been going on since 2010 and only now given the urgency it deserves. On the 22/9/2015 an article titled: “Venezuela y Trinidad y Tobago potencian relacion enegetica” appeared on the Spanish language site of PDVSA. In this article Minister Del Pino is reported as indicating the possibility of gas from Venezuela’s Perla field being piped to Atlantic for processing into LNG. The article did not report Minister Del Pino or anyone of the Venezuelan government as saying that gas from Loran-Manatee will be sent to Atlantic and no such statement has appeared on PDVSA’s website since. Given the  fact that PDVSA is the operator of the Loran field it is expected that said announcement will come from PDVSA when there is a done deal to announce. PDVSA’s silence is instructive. On the 26/10/2015 and article titled: “Venezuela y Trinidad y Tobago iniciaran operacional conjuntas en campos transfronterizos costa afuera” where the classic language of shuffle was used to say very little. What is T&T giving Venezuela in return? What does T&T have that Venezuela wants right now? On the 27/10/2015 the Spanish language website of PDVSA carried an article titled: “Ministro Del Pino; ‘ Para la  incorporacion de barriles se requiere estabilidad de precio’ in which Minister Del Pino who is also in charge of PDVSA was reported as stating that the world price of gas has to be raised in order for the industry to be sustainable. Del Pino was in fact stating the position of Commander Hugo Chavez on exporting  Venezuela’s gas as LNG at such low prices as being a waste of the wasting resource of Venezuela. Del Pino stated that daily production of the Perla field was 400 million cubic feet of gas and that under the unitisation agreement of Loran-Manatee 80% of the gas will be sent to Guiria in Sucre state, Venezuela. That is Venezuela’s share of the gas. Del Pino is then maintaining the Chavista line on LNG and the exploitation of Venezuela’s share of Loran-Manatee gas. Those who delude themselves into believing that the Maduro government is homogeneously monolithic will be played. Also note that the present government of Guyana has played itself into a corner like little Jack Horner.

The latest buzz word on LNG: GLUT

In 2015 LNG supply and demand are out of balance on world markets. As of 2015 brand new trains have commenced coming on-line both in Australia and the US whilst demand has slacked off in Asia, Europe and Latin America to the extent where analysts are now speaking of a LNG glut on world markets. Asian and European spot prices now follow each other closely whilst brand new production enters the market without the boon in Asian prices to contribute to profit maximisation. At best margins are razor thin as seen in the cost structure of US shale gas LNG with a processing cost of USD 2 per MMBTU and a shipping cost of USD 3 per MMBTU to Asia and Asian spot prices below USD 7/8 per MMBTU. Japanese utility companies who bought LNG following the Fukushima disaster in larger quantities are now showing a preference for coal given the collapse in Asian commodity prices. The EU has not embraced LNG as was forecasted as they continue to utilise coal to generate electricity and have embraced Russian supplied  gas even tighter inspite of the sanctions against Russia. The message is then clear that in times of economic slowdown LNG buyers in Asia and Europe switch to alternate fuel even though they are not green or they forego politics and embrace the energy rich outcast. The relevant reality is the move by Asian buyers of LNG to now create in this glutted market an Asian spot market for LNG. Having adopted the position that the stream of new LNG trains placed in Asia and the long term oversupply of the market suppliers must now end their demand for long term contracts from buyers. Cheniere LNG of the US has responded to this market reality by allowing its contracted buyers especially those in Asia to sell onwards LNG purchased on long term contracts with no return on this to Cheniere thereby boosting the Asian spot market. US LNG is once again changing the order of the LNG business. The glut will disappear only when the level of demand outstrips supply and the LNG stored in tanks and tankers around the world disappear. The estimate for this re-balancing is in the 2020’s. The lesson for T&T again is the fact that the paradigm that informed the creation of LNG trains in T&T is no longer sustainable as it has been falsified. The gas reserves of T&T must now feed manufacturing plants that increase the added value of products manufactured in T&T. Yes we need smelters and plants that turn the outputs into high value products. That is where the well paying jobs will be generated. Hard decisions are now necessary. Haiti beckons!!!

http://www.ogj.com/articles/2015/09/global-lng-market-is-heading-toward-a-surplus-brg-analyst-says.html

http://www.worldoil.com/news/2015/9/25/nobody-is-making-money-off-us-natural-gas-exports-engie-says

http://www.worldoil.com/news/2015/9/30/plummeting-dutch-gas-output-cant-stop-european-price-slump

http://www.worldoil.com/news/2015/9/28/russia-ukraine-gas-agreement-warms-europe-amid-widening-glut

http://www.worldoil.com/news/2015/10/06/buyers-market-for-lng-turns-tables-on-producers-amid-supply-glut

Manufactured news/political spin on T&T’s LNG sector

The political response to the shortfall in gas supply to the local gas based manufacturing sector has been tall tales, manufactured news passing for political spin. With the collapse of oil prices and the consequent fall in LNG contract prices indexed to the market price of oil and the collapse in Asian spot prices primarily caused by increased and increasing supply and sluggish demand the manufactured news mill passing for political spin has now entered a new phase. This phase is now predicated on attacking the manner in which LNG produced in T&T is marketed internationally by the shareholders of Atlantic. This attack is without legal basis as it speaks as if the LNG industry of T&T is state owned and the shareholders have a legal duty to maximise the revenue T&T earns from the sale of LNG produced in T&T on the international markets. It is a UNC government that established the legal/contractual parameters for Trains 1to 3 of Atlantic LNG. A PNM government with the creation of Train 4 tried to vary this boundary of this parameter but the operational reality of Trains 1 to 3 were sacrosant/untouchable. But the fundamental reality remains: for all trains the final product is disposed of in keeping with the strategic imperatives of the transnational corporation which is a shareholder of Atlantic. Why then attack  the shareholders of Atlantic when their actions are lawful under the terms established by a UNC government? If the owners of the product of Atlantic choose to sell LNG to Chile where LNG prices are linked to US Henry Hub prices rather than to markets where the price of LNG is higher that is their legal right as determined by duly elected governments of T&T. You cannot eat your harkow and have it too these are the breaks. But this is not the fundamental issue raised in the manufactured news story and I have to ask questions because this is the era in T&T of pre-action protocol letters and being unemployed, poor and broken I have no court house clothes. These then are the salient questions that arise: this netback formula from which T&T revenue is calculated does this formula only apply to LNG produced at Train 4 of Atlantic whilst for Trains 1 to 3 netback does not apply? If yes what then is the formula applied to Trains 1 to 3 and how does this impact the revenue derived by T&T? These are the crucial questions in an era where the US shale gas revolution is now the gravest threat to the future revenue earning potential to T&T of Atlantic. This paltry attempt at attacking the shareholders in public then seeking to suck up in private is a dangerous play in the era of USD 40 and USD 50 oil, with profit warnings, falling stock prices and cost cutting driven by people losing their jobs. We don’t hold the trump cards in this world energy market they do. They are not driven by the desire to win a general election Play fake, denial hardball and we the people get burn. We the people need to be told the reality political spin cannot buy groceries!

LNG, Trinidad and Tobago and the NEW ORDER

Nothing has fundamentally changed since my last posting on LNG as Asian spot prices per MMbtu is still below 8 USD because of a flood of new supply faced with waning demand. But in the face of this reality the revolution created by the export of US shale gas LNG is being rolled out destined to deeply impact the LNG markets of the world as early as December 2015. US exporters especially Cheniere are selling LNG on contract not to consumers but to traders who have  indicated their intent to re-sell LNG sourced from US suppliers. The movement is already in play to end the influence of contract prices on spot prices as the US is destined to be the third largest exporter of LNG in the world by the end of the second decade of the 21st  century. US LNG producers can afford to sell their product to traders rather than consumers because of the supply side cost structures of the US shale gas revolution. The next paradigm collapse is the prediction that Europe today would have increased its demand for LNG appreciably to merit investment in offshore plants. This has failed to materialise. Which means that the two paradigms that created the investment in LNG trains in T&T have both failed. Whilst T&T is yet to solve the problem of gas feedstock shortfalls to industries in 2015 because of the failure of the present government to deal with the reality of a collapsed paradigms and the threat posed by US shale gas whilst they spend as if nothing has changed for the T&T gas economy. T&T LNG producers have already worked out their response to the shale gas revolution and this strategy impacts the revenue earned by T&T governments well into the future. Politicians must now dance with this reality and relate this to the general public. Spending bountifully to win re-election then what?

http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/business/energy/lack-of-demand-to-delay-australian-lng-projects-20150622-ghu1xu.html

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/global-lng-prices-slide-japan-140052715.html;_ylt=AwrC1zE8w4lVIXsA_PbQtDMD;_ylu=X3oDMTBydWNmY2MwBGNvbG8DYmYxBHBvcwM0BHZ0aWQDBHNlYwNzcg–

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/cheniere-energy-boost-lng-capacity-200508129.html;_ylt=AwrC0F.yxIlVQVAA3mDQtDMD;_ylu=X3oDMTBybGY3bmpvBGNvbG8DYmYxBHBvcwMyBHZ0aWQDBHNlYwNzcg–

http://www.worldoil.com/news/2015/5/19/shale-set-to-pummel-another-market-as-us-lng-plants-arrive

Hugo Chavez played Trinidad and Tobago on Loran-Manatee gas field

Details of this issue are presented in my book: “The Geo-politics of LNG in Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuela in the 21st century” The following questions are extremely relevant on this issue: Why did Chavez in the post-2002 attempted coup politics of Venezuela choose to pit up for bidding offshore blocks where there is no hinterland with the development to facilitate effective monetisation of these gas fields? Whilst blocks as Perla offshore Falcon state on the Caribbean coast were by-passed blocks with a near pristine hinterland were open to bidding. Perla subsequently developed has at minimum 15 tcf of gas with the hinterland to enable effective monetisation. By opening these blocks Chavez therefore enticed successive governments of T&T to salivate over the thought of Venezuealan gas being processed into LNG in T&T. And by salivating successive governments had to dance with Venezuela thereby walking the tightrope with the US. How has the US shale gas revolution impacted plans to raise LNG trains in Venezuela? Chavez indicated that given the US gas revolution LNG plants for export to the US were no longer feasible therefore the strategy calls for domestic use of Venezuelan gas resources and surplus gas then considered for LNG plants. This policy stated in “Sowing the oil” was applied to the Perla field where the first production platform was recently installed. Likewise the Dragon fields etc offshore Sucre state have had their production fed into the national gas network. Remember Venezuela with its huge gas resources has been forced to import natural gas from Colombia. Why spend billions of USD to develop the gas of Loran to send it to the terminal at Sucre state? Is Chevron set on erecting a LNG train with Loran gas? Is LNG based on Loran gas profitable in an environment of US shale gas LNG exports? Successive T&T governments are then hoping that Venezuela surrender and send Loran gas to T&T for processing to LNG. That is a wish deeply impacted by Venezuela’s internal politics leaving T&T politicians to belly gripe and complain with bouts of hand wringing. Chavez played them all to neutralise a threat on Venezuela’s Atlantic margins then came PetroCaribe as the instrument to increase Venezuelan influence in Caricom. 24 September 2015 On September 23, 2015 a story on the Spanish website of PDVSA stated that the supply of gas from the Perla field, Venezuela to Atlantic LNG for processing into LNG can happen nothing was said of Venezuelan gas from Loran-Manatee field making the same journey. Repsol and Eni have signed a contract selling all the gas produced to 2036 from the Perla field to PDVSA for use in the domestic market. The undertaking is whenever Venezuela’s domestic gas shortfall is addressed then Repsol and Eni can commence the production of LNG for export. Today, now, that stifling gas shortfall exists and the timeframe for ending this shortfall is pressured by the shortfall in electricity generated by hydro-electricity heightens given diminished rainfall over time. There is then need to rapidly erect gas fired electricity generating stations as a matter of urgency. Then the infrastructure to move gas from Perla to Sucre state does not exist at this time. There is a pipeline system that moves gas from Sucre to the gas hub that plugs it in to the national system. This then is not a solution to T&T’s immediate problem of an inadequate domestic level of gas production. Venezuela sending gas from Perla or its share of the Loran-Manatee field to be processed at Atlantic does not solve our problem of a  domestic gas shortfall. The question is: what will T&T have to give Venezuela in exchange for Venezuelan gas fed into Atlantic? And what is the benefit to T&T with third party gas processing which is supplied outside of T&T? To solve the domestic gas shortfall the government of T&T has to grasp the mettle and engage with BP and not evade the issues as the previous government to the detriment of T&T.

The Perfect LNG Storm is formed: target T&T

Last week the European LNG price premium died as spot prices for LNG in Asia driven by Japanese demand rose to below USD 8 per MMbtu but the price is not attractive to pull LNG cargoes away from Europe given the freight and lack-luster demand in Asia. LNG cargoes will then continue to be dumped in the Atlantic basin seeking markets in Europe and Brazil. Brazil’s acute drought has crippled the capacity of its hydro-electric plants causing shortfalls in the supply of electricity to its major urban conclaves: Sao Paulo and Rio de Janiero. The question then is the level of demand in Europe and the demand capacity to absorb the volume  of product on offer. Then the slide of the value of the Euro to the USD, yesterday it closed on Wall St at 1.06 USD to 1 Euro, is raising the real cost of imported LNG to consumers. Chevron has announced that LNG from the first train of its huge Gorgon LNG project in Australia will be exported in the final quarter of 2015 raising further the supply of Asian produced LNG to Asia. Finally the successive cold waves that brought below freezing temperature to the US North-East thereby raising the cost of imported LNG to USD 14 MMbtu and above is about over and as a result no more laden LNG carriers are presently heading for the US North-East or Repsol’s Canaport in Canada. I daresay T&T LNG was in this flow that is now dead. In the face of this perfect storm T&T is faced with an explosion of demand for US currency which has nothing to do with the level of demand in the economy. The largest single retailer of consumer durables in T&T has following the Christmas 2014 reality is reported to have laid off 200 workers/contractors with a further 150 to go and closed a series of sales outlets of one of its brand stores, major contraction to match the level of demand from its client base. Where then is the level of demand to justify an explosion of demand for hard currency? The rate of demand is outstripping supply and this has led to the fall in the level of hard currency savings held by the Central bank for the people of T&T not the politicians of T&T. The perfect storm has hit T&T and are we to expect a rapid depletion of our foreign reserves for the sake of political expediency. If demand outstrips supply why no depreciation of the TT dollar vs the US dollar? Why is the TT dollar appreciating? Clearly a political solution to market realities. Note carefully the LNG markets have changed structurally because of a new paradigm this is no short term dislocation. I have stated it before in a previous post that the new paradigm in the Caribbean illicit trades is also pushing the run on our hard currency reserves as the supply side of the market tightens under the Mexican cartel monopoly. The DR has also a similar run on its hand and its Central bank has intervened via repeat sales of USDs to defend its currency.

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/global-lng-asia-prices-creep-080129120.html;_ylt=AwrBJR5M5f5UU04ATMjQtDMD

https://uk.finance.yahoo.com/news/lng-import-binge-ends-no-222908315.html

http://www.brecorder.com/markets/energy/europe/229106-asian-spot-lng-prices-oust-europe-as-worlds-no1.html

March 16, 2015: For the week ending 13 March the Asian spot market price remained unchanged at USD 7.75 per MMbtu with May delivery in the low USD 7s. End users are “mostly well stocked” and there is no rush to buy as traders set their gaze on April market demand. Argentina’s YPF finally came into the market with tenders for 11 LNG cargoes: six full loads and five partial loads for its first purchase since September 2014. Such is the nature of spot demand in this month. LNG prices in Asia are expected to fall when in 2015 some 32 million tonnes of LNG capacity come on stream in Australia. The perfect storm intensifies battering T&T’s revenue base in the land of acute denial and political power possession for the sake of personal aggrandisement.