WITHIN hours, it is expected that government will sign off on the Pointe-a-Pierre refinery acquisition process with Patriotic Energies and Technologies Company Ltd.
Patriotic is the fully owned subsidy company of the Oilfield Workers Trade Union (OWTU) which was selected by government as the preferred bidder from among 77 expressions of interest, to acquire the assets of the refinery and port at Pointe-a-Pierre following the closure of Petrotrin.
President General of the OWTU Ancel Roget along with two of Patriotic’s directors, Ozzi Warwick and Richard Lee, were invited to a 11 am meeting on Thursday and are now meeting with the chairman of Trinidad Petroleum Holdings Ltd (TPHL) Newman George, CEO of Paria Fuel Trading Company Ltd Mustaq Mohammed and with the company’s attorney. The meeting is taking place at Petrotrin's Maraval Road, Port of Spain, office.
TPHL is vested with the responsibility of managing TT’s oil and related assets and has four subsidiaries including Paria, Heritage Petroleum Company Ltd, Guaracara Refinery Ltd and Petroleum Company of TT (Petrotrin).
Before leaving for the meeting, Roget addressed the media at Paramount Building, San Fernando, to say he was hoping to have announced the completion of the first phase of the two-phase process, which is the acquisition of the refinery and port.
However, he said what ever the outcome during Thursday’s meeting he will update country on Friday.
Last Wednesday, at the launch of the Petrotrin Land Distribution Programme for workers who were terminated the Prime Minister announced his readiness to sign off on the agreement with Patriotic.
In response to that statement, Roget said Rowley gave the impression that the OWTU only had to sign, “And we would have completed the first stage of a two stage process – that is to say the asset purchase agreement – and then move on to the closing process.”
Roget said that was not the case. In fact, he said, between last Wednesday and this Thursday, “We would have hoped from that time to now, because he would have told the country it was just a matter of days, we would have been able to close that first stage of the process and announce in a like manner this morning.
“This morning, I want to offer an apology because we cannot at this time announce that we would have signed, because we did not meet this week. However, yesterday (Wednesday) we were called and informed that a meeting aimed at closing the first phase would take place today at 11 am.
“We thought it necessary, out of respect for the media and through your medium, out of respect for the people of the country, the people who are called to make a decision in a matter of weeks, that they hear from me we are postponing this announcement until the outcome tomorrow (Friday).”