Suriname's state oil company Staatsolie could make an investment decision in the first quarter of 2013 for the production of biofuel and hydropower, according to a presentation by Rudolf Elias, deputy director of business development.
The projects are part of Staatsolie's 2020 vision that includes diversifying the downstream product portfolio and producing high quality products, with the aim of going from an oil and gas company to an energy company.
Fourteen varieties of sugarcane from Brazil and Guyana have been selected and field experiments are being designed.
A pilot project and agricultural and industrial studies will be carried out through end-2011, while environmental and social impact studies are scheduled to run through early 2012.
Operations of a commercial plant have been penciled in for the first half of 2015.
Staatsolie's portfolio also includes hydroelectric project Tapajai, which would boast an installed capacity of 400MW.
A project update is due to be ready at year-end while environmental and social impact work is scheduled to take through end-2012. A first phase could come online in 1H15.
Staatsolie, which operates a 14MW thermo plant and sells output to state utility Energiebedrijven Suriname, aims to tap the country's hydro potential to help cover demand which is due to grow to 450MW in 2020 from the current 160-180MW.