Continuing my series of blogs of the Energy Chamber’s Local Content & Capability Development Forum last November, the feature speaker was The Minister of Energy and Energy Affairs, the Honourable Kevin Ramnarine. The minister was very upbeat about the prospects of the local energy industry, citing the unprecedented number of foreign contracts for deep water exploration and the 32.4% growth in the energy services sector. Advance planning by Central Bank, to cope with the huge loss of upstream tax revenues during the recent turnaround, was handled so well that the population barely noticed. The Ministry is aiming for a much needed Local Content bill in 2014 to set up indigenous human resources and improve the industrial capability of the country. The minister urged local service companies to stand up and deliver to standards at least as good as their foreign counterparts. The ministry is also working on a Natural Gas Master Plan for the period 2014-2024 to chart the course forward.
This is very encouraging support from the ministry but there is so much to do and an election could reverse all advances made. Let’s hope that much can be achieved in the coming year.