Even if you have no interest in energy, you have heard of Petrotrin! But who are the other players in the industry and how are they different? To summarize, there are 35 companies operating within the energy sector according to the Trinidad and Tobago Energy Guide.
These 35 companies show great diversity in their size, ownership and role in the industry. However, there are three major types of companies in the sector:
1. International Oil Companies (IOCs)
IOCs operate globally and typically are involved in the entire oil and gas value chain. IOCs are not state-owned and are regularly ranked among the world’s most profitable (think $$$) corporations. Since oil and gas extraction offshore tends to be expensive and technologically challenging, IOCs dominate this area in T&T.
IOCs in T&T:
2. National Oil Companies (NOCs)
NOCs are state owned companies or majority state-owned companies that typically do not operate outside of the country’s territory. It is important to highlight that NOCs control more than 80% of global oil and gas reserves, and globally are highly competitive performers.
NOCs in T&T:
3. Independent Oil and Gas Companies, Contractors, Service Providers and Consulting Firms
These are typically privately owned companies or part of diversified business groups. The small or medium independent companies play a crucial role in the maintenance and prolongation of life in our mature oil fields. Oil service companies (eg. Schlumberger, Halliburton) provide products, services and specific technical expertise. Similarly consultants can be contracted to conduct audits or studies for oil and gas companies.
Now that you have an introduction to the types of companies operating in the energy sector in T&T, next time we can delve into the debate over Petrotrin: to privatize or not to privatize… that is our question!