Saturday, April 25, 2020

Crisis at Petronas?

26 April udpates:
If you could not find the link to Syed Akbar Ali's posting below, you're not alone. But, for the record, Petronas did deny the shutdown, says all 18 oil rigs are in operation.

Updated midnight:
Syed Akbar Ali did a quick posting Petronas denies shutting down oil rigs after Terawih just now, with the alluring promise: "Will follow up tomorrow morning."
The blogger Big Dog said the same to me earlier in the day. His sources at the national oil corporation had told him the NST sources' piece Petronas shuts down 14 projects until oil prices recover was not factual. Planted or devious, he couldn't establish.
See Big Dog's Pumping the Petrol.
Question is, is this part of the 'crisis' in Petronas that Matthias Chang was alerting the Prime Minister about in his open letter?
We'll know more tomorrow, for sure.

Original posting
Former Dr M aide tells Muhyiddin to look into the national oil corporation, urgently
"... you must on an urgent basis, be hands-on to resolve the crisis that has engulfed Petronas. Please direct your Finance Minister and an independent expert in the oil industry to advise you on the current challenges faced by all oil producers." - Matthias Chang, Open Letter to the Prime Minister
Puchong, 25 April: Matthais Chang was a Mahathir insider and loyalist for as long as I have been blogging. He was privy to a lot of things that were going on in the corridors of power when the Tun was PM, Khazanah chairman and Petronas advisor. A couple of months back, MC started to 'go his own way" and openly criticise and ridicule some of the advisors to the two-time PM. If you, Dear Readers, have not come across any posting or article related to these attacks, it is probably because of the "colourful" language MC dishes out against his rivals. The lawyer saves his good manners and polite rantings only for those who has his respect. 

His open letter (dated today)published by The Mole warns the Prime Minister of plotters, double crossers, race baiters and bigots that lurk in every corner he turns. Clearly, these lurkers are from Muhyiddin's own party/coalition and from the fallen Pakatan Harapan government, which MC himself had briefly supported .

"These bunch of plotters are driven by jealousies, anger and frustration. If truth be told, you were never in their equations and calculations which reflect their arrogance and contempt.

Karma has wrought a heavy price – one horse peed at the “Starters Gate” and another was confused as to which race to run. The Jockey, undecided as to which horse to ride, was left high and dry with no horses to ride before the race took off. 

It was pathetic. And what a comedy of errors!"

Politics aside - and this is why I thought Matthias' open letter deserves sharing on this blog  - the lawyer has asked the PM to urgently resolve the crisis that has engulfed the national oil corporation, Petronas. 

Is Petronas in dire straits?  MC thinks so and said Muhyiddin should get his Minister of Finance, Tengku Zafrul Aziz, and appoint an independent expert to advise him. In other words, Matthias is telling the PM to make changes at the oil company now, to bring in new blood, people who really know the industry. Against talk that Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah may be brought in as Petronas advisor, this makes sense, especially since the PM has been sacking bosses of lesser GLCs and replacing them with his own candidates.

Remember that Petronas is the Crown Jewel of our economy, specifically the
Bumiputera economy. This is the reality. 
Ignore and turn your back on race baiters and bigots. Please stay focus and equip yourself about Petronas and the oil industry. Our country’s fate in more ways than one is hanging on this delicate balance.

Blogger: Matthias Change is consistent


  1. XUMNO5:03 pm

    The PM should heed MC warnings, they seems genuine enough to warrant a thorough checkup and if the warnings are true, act intelligently with wisdom. There is little to lose and a lot to gain; after all a cleaning up of all GLCs is desired at the moment to rid pests and parasites from the previous administration. We have ample supply of dedicated young petroleum engineers, scientists, economists etc who can deliver better and more efficient ideas and performance. Wasn't that the purpose of Unversiti Petronas for?

  2. workplace politics are normal n happen in each and every corporate establishmen but i m not interested to talk about it as it is a common subject. As for petronas, the crisis is more on very low price of crude oil. Their production cost is around usd30 barrel. That s for shallow water but for deepwater such as kikeh, malikai and gumusut kakap certainly more than that.
    Apart from that petronas is becoming like jkr. Too many manpower with duplication of tasks. But that is acceptable coz like u pointed out petronas was established to help the bumiputras but excess of manpower is too obvious to ignore. Manpower optimization would be at the expense of layoffs of huge no of bumi engineers.
    We hv to face the fact that we re going thru new era of working style. WFH, virtual meetings which means huge no of people will lose jobs. Even workspace would hardly be rented in the future.
    My 2 cents...wanna write more but too knackered

  3. Anonymous9:25 pm

    Sokong Islam...
    I think laying off people is the answer?
    Petronas got 2 wings upstream and downstream business...
    When upstream price going down... the downstream profit will increase...
    But in Covid situation both suffer because no demand for downstream.
    Petronas may be can sustain their people by shuffling position