Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : November 5th 2015 Contents NOVEMBER 5 • 2015 www.guardian.co.tt BUSINESS GUARDIAN
NEWS | BG7
President of the National Trade Union
Centre (Natuc) Michael Annisette said
there is dire need for statistics on the
rate of absenteeism in the T&T market.
Annisette added that the problem can-
not be addressed unless the statistics
He was speaking to reporters after
participating in a panel discussion on
day two of the conference, which was
held at the Hilton hotel, Lady Young
Road, St Ann's.
"You cannot come to a forum and
talk about absenteeism without having
the empirical data in which to do the
evaluation to come up with the solu-
tions. If you want to know what is caus-
ing an issue, you must get to the root
cause and proper data would let you
know what are the causes of absen-
teeism. There are different types of
absenteeism, different reasons and if
you don't have that kind of data how
can you respond to it in a meaningful
Describing absenteeism as a "phe-
nomenal problem" in T&T, he said:
"It's an issue we need to look at if we
have to be competitive and if we have
to compete on the global market. It
causes a lot of disruptions in terms of
the operations, it's a financial cost, it
is a burden."
The World Economic Forum, in its
early October Global Competitive Index
report, had ranked T&T 89, citing poor
work ethic in the labour force as one
of the issues which contributed to
As though offering a suggestion,
Annisette said the issue has to be dealt
with "in a scientific way and not in the
traditional way of disciplining staff,
since that has not solved the problem.
"We need to get to the root causes
to get the data, we need to get the
emperical evidence so we can respond
accordingly and put the process and
mechanism in place that will negate
it."Addressing the issue of workers tak-
ing their sick leave days because they
are entitled to it, he said sick days are
for use when the employee is sick and
not for anything else.
"Not because the worker has 14 days
sick leave that we take it every year
without being sick. It continues to be
Referring to an Industrial Court
judgement where the court ruled in
favour of a company, without naming
the company, he stated that: "What
was happening was that worker was
taking all his vacation leave at a par-
ticular time each year, and all the sick
days for over a period of time. It was
challenged by the company and the
court ruled in favour of the company.
"There is a precedent in the Industrial
court; 14 days entitlement does not
necessarily mean that I (the employee)
have 14 days sick leave that would taken
taken, whether sick or not. That is not
the idea, that was not the concept, that
is not the principle that governs sick
leave, sick leave is to be taken when
you are sick."
Referring to amendments of the
Industrial Relations Act returning for
consultation, he said the union had ini-
tially rejected the act in the form that
it was presented by the former admin-
istration. He added that there was no
consultation with the trade union
movement who wanted the act to be
updated to "modern industrial relations
From Page 6
Eight months before the start of its drilling campaign
in the deepwater, BHP Billiton has still not decided
where it will drill its first wells nor how many wells
it will drill.
The company told the Business Guardian that the
decision of both the location and the number of wells
will be decided based on "our assessment of the seis-
According to BHP Billiton, the geological structures
are complex and therefore require significant analysis
of the seismic data.
"The geological structures are complex, and in-
depth analysis of the seismic data is currently being
undertaken." BHP told BG in an email response to
BHP is the operator on all the deepwater blocks
which were offered in three bid rounds. Earlier this
year, the company told a meeting of the Geological
Society of Trinidad and Tobago that it is excited
about the prospects from its deepwater blocks after
seeing the initial seismic data.
BHP reported that it had seen massive structures
and that it had also conducted a piston core sample
that revealed an active hydrocarbon system.
It is expected that in the northern deepwater blocks
in which BHP Billiton is operator with partner BP
PLC, there is the same Oligocene trend as found in
BHP Billiton's Angostura field. Blocks 23(a) and TTDAA
14 are offshore the east coast of Trinidad and Tobago
and BHP Billiton believes that they are a continuation
Angostura is BHP's current field, in which it dis-
covered significant oil and gas that reserves that have
been difficult to produce because of significant fault-
The northern blocks were originally awarded to
BP and had the same trend as BHP's Angostura field.
Greater Angostura field lies in 36-46 m of water on
the continental shelf, 37 km east of Trinidad and in
the eastern Trinidadian sector of the eastern Venezuela
BHP was asked the following questions but did
not respond to most.
1) Can you say when the company plans to begin
drilling on its deep water blocks?
2) What is the projected length of the drilling cam-
3) How many wells will be drilled in the initial
phase of the campaign?
4) Which blocks are these wells to be drilled in
the initial campaign?
5) How much is it to cost per wells?
6) Has BHP's reduction in its global E and P budget
affected the planning and timing of the wells?
7) Which drill ship has been contracted to provide
The Business Guardian has however confirmed
that BHP will be using Transocean's Deepwater Invic-
tus drillship, which can operate in as much as 12,000
ft of water and drill as deep as 40,000 ft below the
The company has in the past said that total petro-
leum exploration expenditure for the 2015 financial
year is now forecast to be US$600 million, a 2 per
cent reduction from prior guidance. It noted that its
drilling programme will remain focused on the Gulf
of Mexico, Western Australia and Trinidad and Tobago,
said BHP Billiton.
"The seismic acquisition program in Trinidad and
Tobago was successfully completed for the seven
deep water blocks accessed between 2012 and 2014.
The acquisition for the two blocks awarded in the
2014 deep water bid round is progressing on schedule,"
BHP Billiton release said.
BHP Billiton said 17,687 square kilometre s 3D
seismic acquisition completed over Trinidad and
Tobago Blocks 5, 6, 14, 23a, 23b, 28 and 29.
BHP Billiton still to decide
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