Oil and gas company Shell wants to start looking for oil off the coast of Suriname next year. This was announced by the Surinamese state company Staatsolie Annand Jagesar on Tuesday during a press conference in Paramaribo.
Shell’s enthusiasm is good news for Staatsolie. According to Jagesar, Shell is very “aggressive” when it comes to finding the oil in Surinamese coastal waters. Shell bought in September last year to participate in the search for oil in Surinamese waters.
According to Jagesar, it is not often that a company starts drilling a well within a year of boarding. “They see good prospects. Shell has bought in block 42, close to block 58, where four finds have already been made. It would be fantastic if we also find oil or other hydrocarbons in block 42, “said Jagesar, who took over the directorship of Staatsolie from Rudolf Elias this week.
Jagesar realizes how important Staatsolie is for the future of Suriname, which is currently facing significant financial problems. “I want to monetize the oil as soon as possible so that Suriname can get out of the current financial malaise and be a developed country forever.” After all, State oil would then have to pay more taxes and dividends to the government, which is the company’s sole shareholder.
Although the first oil will probably not surface until 2025, it is expected that the Surinamese economy can also benefit from this in the coming years. Early last year, outgoing director Elias spoke about more than 12 billion euros that the first oil discovery would generate. Five finds have now been made. The finds will create new employment opportunities that can ultimately benefit all Surinamese, says Elias.
State oil announced on Monday that the company achieved a profit before tax of 80 million euros in the 2020 financial year. In 2019 this was still 147 million euros. The turnover was 353 million euros, in 2019 this was 410 million euros. The company sees the consequences of the corona crisis as the leading cause of the worse results.