PORT-OF-SPAIN – The Trinidad and Tobago subsidiaries of BP and BHP Billiton Petroleum have announced plans to cut costs given the current state of the economy in the twin-island nation.
In a statement late Wednesday, BP Trinidad and Tobago said that in line with a focus on improving efficiency and reducing costs, it plans to review third-party costs, activity prioritization, process simplification and organizational structure.
“As plans are still being reviewed the specific numbers have not yet been finalized. Throughout this exercise our first priority will remain the safety of our people and our operations,” the company said.
Also trimming expenditure is the local unit of BHP Billiton Petroleum, which confirmed that it is sending home staff.
“Today’s petroleum industry is facing extremely challenging market conditions, even by historical standards,” the Australia-based company said.
The firm said it was examining current and future business needs to optimize both staffing and costs and make appropriate adjustments in its global petroleum business.
“We will have a smaller, more focused organization and this has resulted in some employee reductions. The result of this work is that within the Trinidad and Tobago operation, as in company locations globally, some positions will be impacted,” BHP said.
Prime Minister Keith Rowley said last month that his administration was moving toward reviving the ailing economy and eliminating the need to seek assistance from the International Monetary Fund, even as he urged citizens “to acknowledge that we don’t have as much as we would like, so there are going to be some restrictions on spending.”
Prior to Rowley’s announcement the then-governor of the Central Bank, Jwala Rambarran, said the oil-rich republic was officially in recession.