See: Work permit ruling may bring Petronas to heel

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KUCHING: The Opposition wants the work permit ruling to be used by the Sarawak Government to bring Petronas to heel on the development of local hydrocarbon resources.

“This will ensure that Sarawak can best utilize its natural resources to develop, independent of federal allocations,” said PKR Sarawak Vice-Chairman See Chee How in a statement.

For starters, said See, the moratorium on new work permits should also be extended to existing work permits held by Petronas staff.

If Petronas sends officials to ask the Chief Minister for more work permits, he added, Adenan Satem should not make any concessions.

“He should demand that the Federal Government meet with the Sarawak Government to re-negotiate for new arrangements for the joint development of local resources.”

Already, he pointed out, the revocation of the Emergency Orders and the Territorial Sea Act 2012 means that Sarawak now has full control over all natural resources within its territorial boundary.

“We can demand all the rights and entitlements that are ours.”

The re-negotiation and new arrangements, said See who is also Batu Lintang Assemblyman, must be on several matters.

Firstly, the terms and conditions of the tripartite Petroleum Development Agreement – the “oil agreement” — between the Sarawak and Federal Governments and Petronas should be revisited and negotiated anew.

Secondly, the Sarawak Government should solely decide on equity and direct participation by state corporations in new Production Sharing Contracts (PSCs) for the development and production of oil and gas and related products in the state.

Thirdly, the Sarawak Government should have equity in existing PSCs due for extension.

Fourthly, state-owned corporations in Sarawak should be partners in existing PSCs.

Fifthly, Petronas should immediately set up a branch campus of its Universiti Teknologi Petronas in Sarawak.

“This would ensure that Sarawakians can obtain knowledge, skills, expertise and experience in engineering, science and technology related to the oil and gas industry,” said See.