Start of a new reserves disclosure policy at the DGH

Vol 9, PW 4 (01 Jun 05) Exploration & Production

Are the new DGH guidelines a government attempt to control the flow of information related to in-place reserves Hardly.

If anything, the new guidelines will usher in an era of unprecedented transparency in the disclosure of in-place and balance recoverable reserves among companies in India something they have refused to do until now on the dubious assumption that the figures are a state secret or an internal matter. This is not how the DGH sees it.

On 20th May, Sibal gave a foretaste of his new policy of openness in a press briefing to announce that 32 companies had bought data packages for NELP-V acreage and that the DGH had signed confidentiality agreements with 43 companies who wanted to view data online. More startling was the disclosure in a DGH press release of in-place reserves figures at discoveries made in blocks from earlier NELP rounds and pre-NELP blocks, including precise DGH-certified numbers about reserves at Reliances eleven discoveries at KG-DWN-98/3 block and its six discoveries at NEC-OSN-97/2; in-place reserves at Cairns RJ-ON-90/1, CB-OS/2, KG-DWN-98/2 blocks as well as its producing Ravva field; Nikos CB-ONN-200/2 block; and GSPCs CB-ONN- 2000/1 block, where reserves are still under evaluation.

Shareholders have a right to know the correct picture, Sibal later told PETROWATCH. They are the ones putting money into these operations.

They must be told what the remaining recoverable reserves are. Shareholders have a right to know whether a discovery is commercial or not.

Is the DGH not worried that oil companies might object to disclosure of their data It is not their data, he said. It is government data.

The government is the owner of these blocks and is leasing them to oil companies. Our role is to make information public so that everyone is aware of what is happening.