Fifty per cent of energy services companies polled indicated that the value of their business was down in the second quarter of 2019. When asked for reasons that their value of business was down, all respondents indicated that it was due to a decrease in demand for their services. Other major reasons cited were less business opportunities and loss of contracts/projects. Fifty per cent of respondents also indicated that the volume of their business was down in the second quarter of 2019. Respondents indicated that this was due to a decrease in demand for their services and less business opportunities.
The Energy Chamber of Trinidad and Tobago’s (Energy Chamber) Energy Services Sectors Survey (ESSS) is a quarterly survey of energy services contractors which allows for such an assessment. Overall, a vibrant energy services sub-sector is integral to the overall health of the energy sector. The ESSS attempts to map the performance and optimism of our energy services sector members, providing data on their business confidence and on some of the phenomena which impact on their operations and business prospects. The survey draws on information from survey participants, such as the level of confidence of service contractors and the value and volume of business in the current quarter, as well as what they project for the next quarter.
Recent data from the Ministry of Energy and Energy Industries in Trinidad and Tobago has shown that production for both oil and gas increased in the first part of the year. The decline of crude oil production appears to have been arrested and the production of natural gas is the highest it has been since 2014.
However, despite this new development, the value and volume of business for energy services companies remain below normal.
Regarding employment, in the next three months, 34 per cent of respondents indicated that the total number of persons employed will increase, while only 8 per cent indicated that the total number of employees will decrease, and 58 per cent indicated that there will be no change in the number of employees within their organisation.
Capital expenditure (CAPEX) authorisations over the next quarter, according to the survey, suggest that most respondents are seeking to reach and engage new clients (54 per cent), while 38 per cent indicated that they would be seeking to provide new services.
The energy services sector is an important sector of the economy: firstly, it is the largest employer in the energy sector, accounting for over one third of total energy sector jobs. Secondly, the sector includes a large number (around 300-400) of small to medium-sized Trinidad and Tobago-owned and operated companies. This contrasts with the rest of the oil and gas sector, which is dominated either by multinational companies or State-owned companies.
This survey is a good indicator of the general sentiment in the energy sector and illustrates the level of activity and development that is occurring within the industry.