Published On: Thu, May 17th, 2018

ConocoPhillips in court: ‘We want to help think about a solution for Curaçao’

ConocoPhilips-OfficesWILLEMSTAD - In the lawsuit of the Curaçao government, the refinery owner RdK, utilities and fuel supplier Curoil against PdVSA, refinery operator Isla and especially ConocoPhillips, the latter claims that they do not want to harm the island’s economy.

On Tuesday, the government's summary proceedings took place to remove the seizure of the American oil company from the oil and stockpiles of PdVSA. This is because there would only be enough fuel for two months (and not three, as the Prime Minister said on Sunday) with all the negative consequences for the energy supply, transport and so the economy of the island.

However, ConocoPhillips lawyer emphasizes that the goal is to get money from PdVSA and not to harm the island. The company also says that it wants to think about solutions so that the island will not suffer. In the courtroom, however, he heard 'nice stories', but not a 'real' solution, according to counsel.

The defense of the government, however, states that ConocoPhillips may not have the intention to harm the economy, but it does lead to that through the seizures. The group has an annual turnover of 30 billion dollars, ten times the gross national product of Curaçao. The claim of 500 million dollars is four days of work for ConocoPhillips. But for that Curaçao is now being saddled with great problems, according to the counselor.

However, the arguments of lawyers from other parties show more. For example, Isla denies that it stopped the delivery of oil products on 12 May. The delivery to Aqualectra has simply continued. The fact that Curoil does not get oil is because it has not paid properly, says Isla's lawyer. Curoil denied that during the session.

In addition, the refinery, Aqualectra and Curoil can come to oil products through other suppliers, as was also clear in court. They are therefore not dependent on PdVsa. But the question is how much that will cost. It will definitely have an impact on the fuel prices on the island.

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