Carribean Island on cusp of oil and gas boom

Better known as a destination for sun-seeking tourists and the home of good cricket players, Trinidad and Tobago is now on the verge of becoming a significant oil and gas producing province due to a number of energy-based projects coming on stream.

"Trinidad and Tobago is on the cusp of a new boom of production of oil and gas. People keep calling it a boom but it looks more like a tidal wave," said the small Carribean nation's Energy Minister, Eric Williams.

Mr Williams said gas production in T&T could peak to around 4 billion cubic feet per day thanks to a proposed gas-to-liquids plant and further expansion of the Atlantic Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) plant.

Atlantic's third LNG train will go on-stream by middle of next year, making T&T the world's fifth largest production site with a capacity of 9.7 million tonnes per annum. Mr Williams said negotiations for a fourth train between Atlantic, whose shareholders include BP Trinidad & Tobago and British Gas, and the government are at an advanced stage.

The Energy Minister added the establishment of an ethylene-based petrochemical complex will also open up significant opportunity for the deepening of the natural gas industry and pave the way for future investments in the country. The government is also looking at setting up an aluminum smelter plant.