Economic climate forces oil and gas giants

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Two of the leading oil and gas production companies in Trinidad & Tobago will be making major cuts based on the current state of the economy.

BP Trinidad and Tobago (bpTT) said that in line with the Group’s focus on improving efficiency and reducing costs, there are plans to review third party costs, activity prioritisation, process simplification and organisational structure.

“As plans are still being reviewed the specific numbers have not yet been finalized. Throughout this exercise our first priority will remain the safety of our people and our operations,” the company said.

The other company cutting back on costs is BHP Billiton, which confirmed on January 13 it is sending home staff.

“Today’s petroleum industry is facing extremely challenging market conditions, even by historical standards,” the company indicated.

According to BHP Billiton the company is examining current and future business needs to optimise both staffing and costs and make appropriate adjustments in its global Petroleum business.

“We remain committed to our ongoing operations while maintaining a platform for future growth opportunities. We will achieve this goal through our productivity program which is already yielding significant savings, and organisational adjustments to meet the needs of our business,” it said.

“As a result, we will have a smaller, more focused organization and this has resulted in some employee reductions. The result of this work is that within the Trinidad and Tobago operation, as in company locations globally, some positions will be impacted,” the release added.

In December 2015, Prime Minister Dr. Keith Rowley said his administration was moving towards reviving the ailing economy and avoid going to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as he urged citizens “to acknowledge that we don’t have as much as we would like so there are going to be some restrictions on spending.”

Prior to Rowley’s announcement the then Governor of the Central Bank Jawala Rambarran said the oil rich twin island republic had “officially” gone into recession. •

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