T&T has to begin looking at other sources of revenue because the energy sector will not be able to sustain the country forever, says BPTT's Chief Executive, Robert Riley. "It is clear to me that what got us to this point it is probably not going to be enough to sustain the energy industry for the length of time it needs to be sustained. "Secondly oil and gas are wasting assets as we use them up. There is no real process for replacing them as fast as we could use them. No matter how much we can find, we are going to have less and less of it. That means we need to be thinking of what will sustain us beyond oil and gas," he said. Speaking at the first day of presentations at the Trinidad and Tobago Energy Conference 2010 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, Port-of-Spain, Riley said that it was clear that the country desperately needed revenue and these moderate prices gas have become a significant source of revenue.
"The challenge for innovation is to bring efficiency to the way we produce it. There is still a lot of opportunity to exploit oil and gas in commercial and technical terms," he said. He added that there is still reason to be optimistic about energy prices. "Oil consumption is turning the corner raising some optimism around for price movements as demand increases. On the other hand gas prices for some time will remain fairly soft. There is a huge surplus of gas in the market," he said. For this reason, he said the energy sector needs to be looked at as an example of innovation and entrepreneurship that should be taken into the wider economy.
"Some of the skills and capabilities that have been developed in the energy sector and mindsets that have been created can be taken as well," he said. He also said T&T has to find new ways of being competitive. "The emergence of quite a large amount of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) has removed the unique advantage that the we enjoyed for so long of being the first in the market. We now have to seek other ways of being competitive in a world of much heavier gas on gas competition. "But I think that natural gas will continue to remain a very important fuel and the demand for it will grow," he said.