Suriname hopes to sign a letter of intent with Guyana in December in which areas of cooperation for oil and gas would be clearly defined. Surinamese Minister of Natural Resources, Regilio Dodson says the the Memorandum of Understanding is likely to be signed during the presidential summit between the two countries, reports Surinamese-based Star News.
Dodson spoke on behalf of President Desi Bouterse on October 26 at the opening of the One Basin Three Nations conference at Hotel Torarica. The international seminar on oil and gas stocks in the Guiana Basin is expected to lead to cooperation between Suriname, Guyana and French Guiana.
Large oil reserves have been found off the coast of Guyana, and recoverable quantities of oil have also been found off the French Guiana coast. For the investors in the coastal area of Suriname it is only a matter of time before they also encounter recoverable oil supplies. Cooperation between the three countries is necessary so that they can develop their oil and gas industry sustainably. Cooperation between the Guianas can provide the nations with a lot of money, knowledge and expertise, Star News reported.
Minister Dodson said that Suriname has reached a certain degree of maturity at government level in the area of institutional requirements to sustainably develop prosperity in natural resources. Suriname will therefore actively try to participate in events and organizations that “help us to get where we want to be as a nation.”
The minister noted that transparency and accountability of the extractive sector is the main goal that the government is trying to achieve. “Suriname is now a future member of the EITI (Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative)and we are working on setting up a mineral institute and revising our mining law. “EITI is the international standards institute for the mining sector based in Oslo, Norway. According to Dodson it is a fact that Suriname, after an oil industry of more than 30 years and an investment of billions of dollars, has failed to create a strong national supply chain for hydrocarbons and a locally supported industry. “We expect an off-shore discovery to do the magic trick.”
OilNOW reported in January that serious consideration was being given to the establishment of an onshore facility in Guyana which could be jointly operated with neighbouring Suriname. This was according to Guyana’s Natural Resources Minister, Raphael Trotman who had responsibility for the country’s petroleum sector at the time.
Hopes of a major offshore oil discovery in Suriname have risen in recent years following the 2015 world class Liza discovery made by ExxonMobil in neighboring Guyana. Since that time ExxonMobil, in partnership with Hess and CNOOC Nexen, has made a total of 9 discoveries amounting to more than 4 billion barrels of recoverable oil.