Third round of OALP of­fers 23 oil, gas, coal-bed meth­ane blocks

Cen­tre ex­pects im­me­di­ate ex­plo­ration work com­mit­ment of about $600-$700 mn

The Hindu - - BUSINESS -

In­dia on Sun­day of­fered 23 oil and gas and CBM blocks for bid­ding in the third round of Open Acreage Licensing Pol­icy (OLAP), ex­pect­ing up to to $700 mil­lion of in­vest­ment that it hoped will help raise do­mes­tic out­put and cut im­ports.

Oil Min­is­ter Dhar­men­dra Prad­han launched the OALPIII bid round at the Petrotech 2019 con­fer­ence here on the out­skirts of Delhi.

“In OALP-III, 23 blocks in 12 sed­i­men­tary basins are be­ing of­fered. Of these, five are coal-bed meth­ane (CBM) blocks. To­tal area on of­fer is about 31,000 square kilo­me­tre,” he said. The last date for bid­ding is April 10.

OALP-III will run con­cur­rently with OALP-II, where 14 blocks, cov­er­ing an area of close to 30,000 sq km, is on of­fer for bid­ding, he said, adding that in OALP-I, 55 blocks, cov­er­ing an area of 60,000 sq km, were of­fered in Jan­uary 2018 and awarded in Oc­to­ber last year.

More area added

“In one year, we have added about 1.2 lakh sq km of area to the ex­plo­ration kitty. This com­pares to 90,000 sq km area un­der ex­plo­ration pre­vi­ously,” he said, adding the area un­der ex­plo­ration will dou­ble by the time the round ends.

“Our ef­fort is to ac­cel­er­ate ex­plo­ration of all sed­i­men­tary basins of the coun­try,” he said.

The third round is ex­pected to “gen­er­ate im­me­di­ate ex­plo­ration work com­mit­ment of around $600-$700 mil­lion,” a state­ment said.

REUTERS ■

Black gold: In OALP-I, 55 blocks, cov­er­ing an area of 60,000 sq km, were of­fered in Jan­uary 2018.

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