BHP Billiton has bolstered their commitment to deepwater in Trinidad and Tobago and Barbados by securing large operated acreage positions in both territories, according to Geraldine Slattery, Asset President, speaking at the Trinidad and Tobago Energy Conference. 

At the Energy Conference, Slattery said that she was very encouraged by the large potential gas resource found at the LeClerc field (in block TTDAA5). She also mentioned that significant gas discoveries in the near term have the potential to hit the market in early to mid-2020’s. This is welcome news for Trinidad and Tobago’s gas-starved LNG and downstream sector. 

According to Slattery, BHP Billiton has positioned themselves in just three key areas worldwide where they see Tier 1 potential – which were identified after BHP Billiton undertook a global endowment study. The study revealed that the deepwaters of the Caribbean particularly in Trinidad and Barbados have Tier 1 potential. She said that the relatively untested waters yielded world-class source rock. The other areas of focus at this time are Gulf of Mexico and North West Australia. 

But while the geology looks promising, Slattery joined other senior executives who presented at the conference in signalling that there are other factors that need urgent attention. Bernard Looney, BP’s Chief Executive, Upstream also indicated that there are other conditions which have resulted in Angelin not being sanctioned yet. Both executives noted that a welcoming investment climate is crucial as countries vie for capital for new pr ojects. 

Slattery indicated that a business environment that is transparent, that has fiscal terms that allow BHP to make a reasonable return on their investment and is supported by efficient regulatory practices are key to making final investment decisions. 

She added that they will continue to work with the Ministry of Energy and Energy Industries in Trinidad and the regulatory bodies to create the right conditions to further develop the shallow water and deepwater operations.