Category Archives: Oil and Gas

Do not squander this opportunity

By Raffique Shah
May 26, 2020

Raffique ShahIf there is substance to the saying that in every crisis there are opportunities, then the COVID-19 pandemic has delivered spectacularly, if only we the inhabitants of the twin-island republic of Trinidad and Tobago would recognise them for what they are, grab them, and infuse them into the post-pandemic recovery narrative and action plans, just so we understand they may never be on offer again.
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Young’s tragic blunder

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
May 18, 2020

If once you forfeit the confidence of your fellow citizens, you can never regain their respect and esteem.

—Abraham Lincoln

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeI thought the expeditious manner in which the Prime Minister and his party handled the coronavirus pandemic rescued their fortunes and gave their supporters reason to believe the PNM would focus on the needs of ordinary people, albeit by circumstances rather than by choice.

Then the unravelling came. Without even being pushed, the Minister of National Security uttered the most unbelievable statements of his career and, by extension, the Government in which he serves. Inexplicably, he continues to do so in the face of evidence to the contrary.
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Compassion and consumer power

By Raffique Shah
May 12, 2020

Raffique ShahBased on comments I’ve heard or read in the media on the likely economic realities that will confront us when Government eases the COVID-19 “lockdown”, I am worried about the future of Trinidad and Tobago. No one disputes that the country faces enormous problems, what with the near-collapse of the oil and gas sectors, the closure of several petrochemical plants in Point Lisas, and the absence of other export-driven industries that could earn substantial foreign exchange.
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After crisis food rationing?

By Raffique Shah
April 06, 2020

Raffique ShahWhen we will have overcome the COVID-19 multi-pronged attack on Trinidad and Tobago, we will face associated problems ranging from the economy under severe stress such as it has never been before, with unemployment at a crisis level, disruption of the education system leaving all stakeholders confused, and possible shortage of foods. Just when the population thought it was safe to exhale, having survived the deadliest pandemic in modern history, the bugle will sound summoning couch-and television-weary troops to do battle again, and likely yet again, for love of country.
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False and Misleading Expectations On Guyana’s Oil Bonanza

By Stephen Kangal
February 25, 2020

Stephen KangalIn a Statement delivered at the Opening of the Energy Conference recently Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley dishonestly sought to create false and misleading expectations in an election year namely that:

– T&T can gain continental shelf-access to and cash in on the huge hydrocarbon producing resources currently being exploited by Guyana, sometime in the future;
– by getting the UN Commission on the Limits of the Continental to agree to extend the maritime limits of T&T beyond 200 miles measured from its straight archipelagic baselines promulgated in 1986 by Order in complete violation of the provisions of the 2006 T&T/Barbados Arbitral Tribunal Award, the 1993 TT/Venezuela Delimitation Agreement and the tenets of the 1986 Law of the Sea Convention.
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Reckless with our National Interests in Barbados

By Stephen Kangal
February 19, 2020

Stephen KangalIt was a catastrophic national disgrace in 2003 when former Prime Minister Patrick Manning allowed former Bajan PM Owen Arthur to unilaterally haul T&T before an International Tribunal that adjudicated on and established our bilateral EEZ maritime boundary. In the process the Tribunal ignored compelling legal precedent and allocated almost half of our legitimate and previously claimed maritime space to the exclusive jurisdiction and expanded maritime patrimony of Barbados in perpetuity.
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Amen, Brother Gregory

By Raffique Shah
January 14, 2020

Raffique ShahIf we think that the Trinidad and Tobago economy is in for another rough ride this year, possibly rougher than what we experienced over the past five years, we should read some of the grim global economic outlooks projected by international agencies such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs et al for almost every country in the world.
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Greed is killing us not so softly

By Raffique Shah
October 16, 2019

Raffique ShahSome day last week, after I had eaten a very modest lunch, I was snacking on a few locally-manufactured crackers when my wife asked, “You still hungry, nah?” She has noted with unnecessary concern that I eat smaller portions, which I attribute to ageing and my now mostly sedentary lifestyle, the latter imposed on me by my infirmity. I don’t need calories that I won’t burn as I did during my very active pre-Parkinson’s life. That reality notwithstanding, the urge to snack on junk remains undiminished, much to my dismay.
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Budget biggest ‘bag’ thieves lay their hands on

By Raffique Shah
October 07, 2019

Raffique ShahIt is a newspaper commentator’s dilemma—having to write on the Finance Minister’s annual budget presentation, as readers expect him to, both before and after the Appropriation Bill is laid in Parliament. This becomes even more challenging when the package covers the year leading to a general election when the Government, and here I mean any government, engages in distributing largesse like the proverbial “parsad” at “pujas”, throwing goodies at the electorate with the expectation that they will yield votes.
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A Magnificent Breakthrough

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
October 03, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeIn the early 1970s when Marxist economics was all the rage, several Caribbean graduate students attended to the classes of Jaroslav Vanek, an economist and professor at Cornell University. He was known worldwide for his research on labor-managed economies or what he called “participatory economies.” Yugoslavia’s President Tito (1843-1980) was in power and was following this approach to social and economic development.
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