Dear friend, said an email received from a very intelligent gentleman in Curacao: I hope you will not call it “fairy tale” in your popular and well-read column because if you do, you might find yourself having to eat your words in a later edition.
He was referring to my Friday column regarding the inaccuracies reported on Aruba’s takeover of refining and terminal assets from Citgo.
Aruba said: It’s a done deal. We’re in charge from now on.
Citgo said: It’s a temporary release. The agreement stands and will resume in time.
I believed Citgo.
The takeover MOU signed by the MinPres got wide distribution. It was carried by Oil & Gas Journal, Bunkerspot.com, Chron.com, Houston Chronicle, OPISNET.com, and other refining related publications.
Just because it was repeated, it created the illusion of truth, and you already know that if you repeat a lie often enough it becomes the truth.
So, my concerned friend from Curacao warned me I would have to eat my hat, if indeed Aruba manages to shake Citgo off permanently.
I said with pleasure.
If the amazing picture described by the MinPres comes true, I will eat my hat, feather included.
(She declared Aruba has 25 companies dying to negotiate, workers will be protected, creditors and contractor paid, in her words: “We’re looking for a serious partner that can invest immediately, make the refinery state of the art, comply with environmental standards, pay their fair share to the government and treat their employees well.”
But, it ain’t happening so fast yet.
On the other hand Refineria di Korsou, made a speedy move.
Apparently after negotiations with the Chinese fell through last year, the Curacao Chronicle reports that RdK met employees to inform them on a visit by the Klesch Group, a possible new operator for Refinery Isla, signing an agreement with that group in September and starting the due diligent process in October.
(Gary Klesch, born 1947, is an American entrepreneur who in 1990 founded the Klesch Group, a global industrial company, based in Geneva, Switzerland, which he owns and chairs. The Klesch Group of companies has interests in metals, mining, oil and gas, power generation, chemicals and other traditional “heavy” industries. Klesch specializes in principal investing in companies that are operating below their full potential. He was educated by the Jesuits, so he thinks outside the box, and his expertise in the field of business restructuring, recovery and growth, is recognized around the globe.)
If Aruba moves fast it could hitch a ride on the Klesch group wagon entry into our arena, perhaps the Klesch group would like to pick up the Aruba refinery to upgrade the Venezuelan crude oil here and send it to Curacao for refining? Using LNG, natural gas in both locations?
IMAGINE, the Department of the Treasury of the USA already blessed this upcoming marriage with a license, allowing the continued operation of the Curacao refinery and the BOPEC tank farm on Bonaire, despite the US sanctions. In other words, the Venezuela Sanctions Regulations were ALREADY AMENDED in honor of this deal, and perhaps Aruba could do the same?
My friends in the biz say that if former RdA emperor Nelson English came on board, he could make it happen. He is an experienced advisor, and could put a deal together, providing all involved drop the WIIFM attitude, and think about the good of the country.
WIIFM = what’s in it for me.