Published On: Mon, May 14th, 2018

Curaçao is looking for third party to operate the refinery

government CuracaoWILLEMSTAD - In a recent press conference, the government of Curaçao indicated that it is looking for a third party to operate the oil refinery. This way the government hopes to prevent a major crisis since the seizure of PDVSA assets by the American company ConocoPhillips.

During the press conference yesterday, the government mainly tried to reassure the population. "There is no reason to panic," said Prime Minister Eugene Rhuggenaath. Earlier, the trade unions PWFC and APRI, Gherrel Remilia, indicated that there is a lot of unrest among refinery personnel. The refinery management does not share information, says trade union leader Angelo Meyer of PWFC, which contributes to the unrest.

The government now hopes to come up with a solution in conversation with PdVSA and ConocoPhillips. But Minister of Economic Development Steven Martina also emphasizes the urgent search for a third party, 'the solution of a joint effort'.

"Suppose the seizure remains, you could agree with PdVSA that others import crude oil, then the refinery will do its work and the end product will be delivered to the markets." Legally this is possible, says the minister, but the Venezuelan company must cooperate.

Yesterday the British BP was named. Curaçao already signed a letter of intent with this company in the past. There are others, claims Martina, but the government does not want to mention the names before it becomes more concrete.

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