Newly-appointed Energy Minister, Fayval Williams, jolted the House of Representatives yesterday when she disclosed that a 2018 valuation of Petrojam revealed the entity has lost almost USD$100-million in value since selling a stake in its operations to Venezuela in 2006.
Minister Williams was making her contribution to the debate on a bill for the unilateral reacquisition of the South American country’s 49 per cent stake in the State-owned oil refinery.
Minister Williams says despite expectations of the Joint Venture further improving the value of the State-owned oil refinery, it has actually destroyed the value of Petrojam.
She says Petrojam’s value has fallen precipitously due to a failure to properly invest in the oil refinery over the years.
This is despite a commitment from the Venezuelans to provide much-needed capital for the venture.
The freshly-minted Energy Minister is accusing the PNP administration at the time for allowing things to get to this point.
Minister Williams is also questioning the motive behind the Opposition’s calls for more time to facilitate the Venezuelan government.
The Energy Minister is accusing the PNP of playing politics at what she described as a crucial juncture in the history of Jamaica’s energy security.