Dragon Gas Pipeline

From Global Energy Monitor
This article is part of the Global Fossil Infrastructure Tracker, a project of Global Energy Monitor.

Dragon Gas Pipeline is a proposed fossil gas pipeline running offshore between Venezuela and Trinidad and Tobago that is currently shelved.


The pipeline would run from the Dragon gas field offshore Venezuela to the Hibiscus platform offshore Trinidad and Tobago.[1]

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Project Details

  • Owner: National Gas Company of Trinidad and Tobago, Shell, Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA)[2]
  • Proposed capacity: Phase 1: 150 million cubic feet per day; Phase II: 150 million cubic feet per day
  • Length: 17 km / 10.56 miles
  • Status: Shelved
  • Start Year: Phase I: 2020; Phase II: 2022


In August 2018 an agreement to import natural gas from the offshore Dragon field was made between the Trinidad & Tobago National Gas Company (NGC), Shell and the Venezuelan state-owned oil and natural gas company, Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A (PDVSA).[3] The pipeline was projected to cost an estimated $100 million.[3]

As of April 2019, plans for the pipeline had been put on indefinite hold due to political turmoil in Venezuela.[4] Given the Dragon field's uncertain prospects, Trinidad & Tobago's government asked Shell to study development options for the Loran-Manatee field on the maritime border between Venezuela and Trinidad & Tobago.[5]

In February 2020, Trinidad & Tobago's Prime Minister Keith Rowley confirmed that his country was pursuing Loran-Manatee as an alternative to Dragon due to United States sanctions against Venezuela, but emphasized that he remained ready to revive the Dragon pipeline project as soon as sanctions are lifted.[6]

In mid-2022, Trinidad and Tobago applied to the US Treasury Department for the right to sidestep US sanctions and negotiate with Venezuela for commercial development of the Dragon field, in the name of promoting regional energy security and reducing economic dependence on Russia.[7] In January 2023 the Treasury Department issued a two-year license allowing Trinidad and Tobago to cut a gas extraction deal with Venezuela's state-run oil company PDVSA, provided no cash payments were made to the Venezuelan government or state-owned enterprises.[7][8] In a January 2023 news conference, Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Keith Rowley indicated that his government hoped to import 350 million cubic feet of gas per day by pipeline from the Dragon field.[7] The Venezuelan gas would help supplement the country's reduced domestic fossil gas reserves and allow full resumption of exports at Trinidad's partially idled Atlantic LNG Terminal.[9] Negotiations between Venezuela and Trinidad and Tobago began in March 2023[10] and continued over the next several months.[8][11][12][13]

Articles and resources


  1. Dragon-Hibiscus, petroleum World, accessed Feb. 7, 2020
  2. "BNamericas - Trinidad puts Dragon gas plans on hold, goes..." BNamericas.com. Retrieved 2021-06-16.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Dragon field deal will help avoid supply gaps in Trinidad & Tobago, Offshore Technology, Sep. 25, 2018
  4. "Venezuela turmoil puts a pause on Dragon Gas deal with Trinidad and Tobago". OilNow. April 18, 2019.
  5. "Shell stays course on Trinidad, Venezuela gas". Argus Media. June 14, 2019.
  6. "Trinidad puts Dragon gas plans on hold, goes it alone at Manatee". BNamericas. February 4, 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 "Exclusive: U.S. issues license to Trinidad and Tobago to develop Venezuela offshore gas field". Reuters. January 24, 2023.
  8. 8.0 8.1 "Trinidad and Tobago urges US to amend Dragon gas project license". Offshore Technology. June 2, 2023.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  9. "Exclusive: Trinidad asks US for changes to Venezuela gas project license". Reuters. June 1, 2023.
  10. "Trinidad to Begin Negotiations for Gas Deal with Venezuela in March". PGJ Online. February 24, 2023.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  11. "Trinidad chomping at the bit over delay to Dragon gas project with Venezuela - Stabroek News". Stabroek News. April 28, 2023.
  12. "Venezuela to hold talks again with Trinidad for Dragon field". Offshore Technology. May 29, 2023.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  13. "Trinidad & Tobago looks to awaken the Dragon". Petroleum Economist. July 7, 2023.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)

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External resources

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