The Scrap Iron Dealers’ Association (SIDA) is calling for an urgent meeting with the Minister of Energy and Energy Affairs to discuss its proposal to purchase old metal from what was Petrotrin.
The Association’s president Allan Ferguson revealed members submitted a bid to Petrotrin now Heritage Petroleum Company Limited and invested heavily in the proposal for the scrap metals after the closure of Petrotrin.
Ferguson, during a media conference held on Wednesday at Signature Hall in Longdenville, Chaguanas claimed that following a discussion with the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the Association is being sidelined and burdened with the tender process.
“We are asking now the Minister of Energy, Stuart Young, to hear our cry because it still have more materials. They cannot move out all that material right away. We still have the opportunity for Trinidad to make money,” Ferguson said.
“Please hear us. Have a meeting with us it is urgent to have a meeting with us to hear what we have to offer for Trinidad. We are offering our country employment and foreign exchange,” he added.
Ferguson said in disposing of the obsolete assets at the company, they estimate to generate a revenue of US$300 million.
“We had was to go and get foreign investors to assist us in approaching Petrotrin. From since last year we bid.”
He added, “The amount of employment we would have had for our organisation to give to the people of Trinidad…I’m saying we are asking Petrotrin today what it is going on with the bid that we bid since last year? Eleven months now and it’s like Petrotrin take my two hands and tie it up and allowing other people to be boxing me. They telling us we can’t do nothing because they have all power they have all the lawyers to write nice things but what I can tell them is that God don’t sleep,” he added.
Ferguson reiterated that the scrap metal was needed in order for the industry to survive.
On September 26 2020 the Heritage Petroleum Company Limited (Heritage) stated that it was abiding by the rules on the sale of its obsolete assets and will not be pressured to do otherwise.
Heritage then said, a tender process was being followed which invited bids from a wide-cross section of interested parties and noted that as a wholly-owned state enterprise, Heritage is guided by the principles of the State Enterprise Performance Monitoring Manual (SEPMM) and Heritage’s associated processes, procedures, and guidelines.
It also noted then that the calls and claims made by the TT Scrap Iron Dealers’ Association (TTSIDA) to enter into a “sole-select” approach will not happen.
When contacted for comment after the Association’s news conference, Minister of Energy Stuart Young said: “This is a matter for Trinidad Petroleum Holdings Limited (TPHL) as the holding company of Petrotrin. The Association can write to TPHL and the Ministry outlining its position and it will be addressed.”