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Nov 23, 2022

Minister of Blue Economy: No One in Their Right Mind in Cabinet Would Want to Do Offshore Drilling

Today, Minister of the Blue Economy, Andre Perez supported a press release issued by the Office of the Prime Minister last week, that there is no consideration being given for any kind of offshore oil exploration. The minister also called out the Vice President of Oceana in Belize, Senator Janelle Chanona, who last week began a petition campaign to trigger a referendum on offshore oil drilling in Belize. Minister Perez said the oil that Belize has would probably be more valuable if we kept it underground than to extract it.


Andre Perez

Andre Perez, Minister of the Blue Economy

 “There is nothing on record that has been discussed about seismic one-on-one discussions. It has been discussed what is out there as it relates to the blue economy. Let’s not forget what is the blue economy, and we have to educate our people what is the definition of the blue economy. The definition of the blue economy is whatever is out there that is there for us to extract, whether it’s seafood, or whatever is out there, we do it in a manner that is environmentally friendly and at the same time very much sustainable. Now back what that organization did, sounding alarm bells as if the sky is falling down that’s what I call it – it is regrettable, it was unnecessary. I am part of a government that is very responsible and no one in Cabinet or in government would in their right mind want to do any kind of drilling. And I have every confidence that what my prime minister said was somewhat of an opinion and nothing is wrong with that. Back to the blue economy: ten, fifteen years ago, if we were to discover oil out there, the only way to give it value was to extract it. What this organization fails to see is that nowadays, we no longer look at the oil only extracted. There is perhaps more value by having that oil kept underground. The blue economy calls for what is out there to quantify it to add it to our economy. These are the things we have to look (at) in consultation with our people. That is important as well. We do appreciate what this organization gets in terms of their funding, but I would rather suggest that she should invest it in our people right now. Many fisherfolks got displaced. We need money right now. We lost almost nineteen million dollars in damages. We have to find those funds to assist our fisherfolks. This is where we invite this organization to work along with our department. We’d be happy to collaborate with them.”

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