Black Immigrant Daily News
Trade and Industry Minister Paula Gopee-Scoon. FILE PHOTO –
Trade and Industry Minister Paula Gopee-Scoon said that Heritage Petroleum Company’s Ltd recent refinancing of the Trinidad Petroleum Holdings Ltd (TPHL) group’s debt to the tune of US$975 million has resulted in an upgrade of the groups S&P rating from B+ to BB.
She made the statement in response to a question by Opposition Senator Wade Mark in the Senate on Tuesday. She was responding on behalf of the Minister of Energy and Energy Industries.
She said this was the second refinancing of TPHL’s debt, with the first instance having taken place in 2019.
“Heritage Petroleum Company Ltd, a subsidiary of Trinidad Petroleum Holdings Ltd (TPHL), approached the international financial market in May 2022 to refinance TPHL’s debt, which resulted from Petrotrin’s debt, comprised the US$850 million bullet bond from Petrotrin that was due to mature in August 2019, part of a US$750 million amortising bond, plus certain costs of the restructuring of Petrotrin into the various companies comprising the TPHL group.
“In this current round of refinancing in 2022, Heritage closed a US$500 million senior secured bond transaction, and US$475 million senior secured term loan which enabled it to refinance the debt and implement a comfortable lower cost and longer term debt maturity profile, as well as remove several restrictive loan covenants that were in place since the 2019 refinancing, such as covenants that limited or restricted the disposal of non-core real estate assets of the former Petrotrin.”
Questioned by Mark, Gopee-Scoon was not able to give the rate of interest, the maturity date, or the financiers. This led Mark to ask Senate President Nigel De Freitas whether Gopee-Scoon should be giving the response if she could not answer the follow-up questions. De Freitas said they would speak about the matter at another time.