CM says Sarawak oil and gas company Petros officially formed

Abang Johari (fourth right) made the announcement on Petros during the Chief Minister's Office appreciation night on Sunday. - CMO

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KUCHING: The long awaited Sarawak oil and gas company has been formed, Chief Minister, Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg, announced in Kuching Sunday night.

Petroleum Sarawak, or Petros, was formed to enable the state to be actively involved and gets a large chunk of work in the state’s oil and gas industry.

They include in exploration, development and extraction of oil and gas in new fields.

Abang Johari said the setting up of the state oil firm is over and above the 20% oil and gas royalty it is currently demanding from Putrajaya.

The state currently receives only 5% and Putrajaya and Petronas are balking at the demand for an increase.

Abang Johari, in making the announcement to members of his cabinet and staff of his ministries and office in a private “ appreciation dinner” organised by his office in conjunction with his 67th birthday, said all the board members of the oil company had also been appointed and they are “among Sarawakian professionals with wide experience in the oil and gas industry”.

Without going into details or revealing any names, he however said none of them were politicians.

The chief minister also disclosed the chief executive officer and board members of the other newly-formed state entity, the Development Bank of Sarawak (DBOS), have been appointed and that it would start its operation soon.

Apart from disclosing that State Secretary, Tan Sri Mohamad Morshidi Abdul Ghani, would chair the board, he too did not name who the board members are apart from saying they were “professionals” and “non-politicians”.

In his address, the chief minister also said he had directed the Sarawak Foundation to approve more scholarships to all postgraduate studies, particularly those leading to PhDs (Doctors of Philosophy).

He said the scholarships would not only give more Sarawakians the opportunity to reach the very top academically but “it will give birth to new researchers”.

The Sarawak Foundation,which he chairs, would increase the number of scholarships and loans to enable Sarawakians study in both local as well as foreign universities, he said. –