“The Asian demand [for oil and gas] is anticipated to grow in excess of 50 percent by 2035. We have to prepare our infrastructure now to solidify the Asian customer base, to support oil storage and shipping requirements, and to get the product to market,” explains Dan J. Villeneuve. His team set out to “acquire a port that would fulfill all transportation/storage requirements for the oil and gas industry in NL” and would be on solid ground for domestic self-sufficiency while increasing foreign export capacities.
With the most direct route to Asian markets, Port Harmon, NL, is the home of VinKing Marine Enterprises Inc. since 2013. They are the owners of the deep-sea port and also have an adjacent 400-acres storage and staging property at Stephenville, NL.
Glancing south across the U.S. border, Villeneuve observes, “Our neighbor has the same idea. With the utilization of fracking, this extraction technique has sent the U.S. crude oil production soaring. They are experiencing the highest barrel per day production since ’99. With [them] becoming self-sufficient, we now have to suss-out new customers.”
“The proximity to western Newfoundland’s oil and gas exploration and the Labrador mining sector position us as the ideal location.” VinKing is regenerating economic growth to the multimodal transportation infrastructure. “Essentially, we have created a one-stop shopping and servicing model for the oil and gas industry!”
Villeneuve sees challenges ahead if Canada is going to sustain itself as a true global player. “Time is of the essence here; we want to maximize all opportunities, [so] decisions need to be made quickly, not quick decisions. A well-thought-out executed plan …The most important, immediate benefit would be to find a solution to balance the oil and gas industry’s economic benefits with those of environmental sustainability.”
His advice to up-and-coming successfuls: “Hone your craft. Become an expert in your chosen field, pursue it with passion and never, ever, allow anyone to say ‘it cannot be done.’” On a closing note with reference to Einstein, Villeneuve adds, “‘Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.’ I don’t know about the ‘touch of genius,’ but I’ve got a lot of courage!”
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