WATCH: PM says gas tanker is temporary and has best world class certification

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat has said tha the Government will not do anything which will put the lives of people in the area of Marsaxlokk at risk and stressed that the gas tanker has the best world class and European certification which conforms with world and European standards.

In his first comments to TVM after the inauguration of the tanker in Singapore, Dr Muscat explained that this was an innovative project and that everything necessary had been done for it to conform with the required standards. He said that this project involved top global companies such as Siemens and Bumi Armada, whom he described as extremely professional in their field on an international scale and that they would never compromise in any way on the security which this project requires.

Dr Muscat said that this is also part of a crucial project by means of which electricity bills will be reduced by 25% and will bring with it a drastic improvement in the quality of the air we breath, especially in the south of the country. He said that this is a temporary tanker because at the moment studies are being carried out for Malta to have a gas pipeline connected to Sicily. He said that when these studies are complete and the project is commissioned, we will have the gas pipeline and the tanker will then leave Malta.

Questioned how this tanker can be considered temporary when the company has an 18 year contract, Dr Muscat replied that in the contract there is a clause which says that once the pipeline comes into effect, the tanker can leave our shores.

Asked whether it will have international classification from international agencies which are independent of Electorgas and Bumi Armada, Dr Muscat said that in fact even during the course of the project, independent engineers were on site to ensure that everything was being done in conformity with international safety standards and that there are all the necessary certifications.

Dr Muscat said that this project is part of the Government’s energy plan because Enemalta has changed from a company which was losing money to one which was expected to make a profit from next year. He said that the Government is giving people peace of mind that their utility bills will continue to be low and that we will not depend on international markets. He added that with this project we will have peace of mind that the quality of our air will be greatly improved.