June 23, 2024

(Bloomberg) — President Nicolás Maduro said Venezuela and Trinidad and Tobago have signed a profit-sharing agreement to export gas from the PDVSA-owned Dragon offshore project.

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The project, which was halted in 2020 due to US sanctions, entails using a field in Venezuelan waters to produce natural gas, which would be imported by the West Indies nation to be processed for export.

“Venezuela has been organizing its gas blocks all over the Caribbean,” Maduro said in televised remarks from the presidential palace on Wednesday.

READ: Venezuela Makes Long-Shot Bid to Revive Ruined Economy With Gas

With the nation’s oil industry in tatters, Maduro sees an economic lifeline in Venezuela’s gas reserves, the second-largest in the Western Hemisphere. While there’s robust demand from European nations looking to replace Russian supplies, any deal needs a nod from the Biden administration to export the fuel without violating US sanctions.

“Our laws offer great advantages to investors, and we’re ready to move forward with any country or company that wants to invest,” Maduro said alongside Trinidad and Tobago Energy Minister Stuart Young.

The deal, which could see the countries exporting gas by 2025, involves transporting supply to Trinidad’s Atlantic LNG plant via a Shell-owned offshore platform. Young has estimated the field could start with output of 175 million cubic feet per day and ramp up to 350 million cubic feet per day.

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