DGH sells $15m worth NELP-VI data to 39 companies

Vol 10, PW 10 (07 Sep 06) People & Policy

If the number of companies buying NELP-VI data is a measure of interest in the upcoming licensing round, then expect a good response to the 15th September deadline.

PETROWATCH learns that by 19th August 39 companies had bought data worth Rs68cr ($15m). Included are all the big names: Chevron, BG, ENI, BHP, Shell, Conoco Philips, Petrobras, Total, Petronas and BP.

Exxon did not buy data, but did visit the DGH dataroom in Houston, now closed. Some surprising newcomers also bought data: Daewoo International, Roc Oil, Gwalior Tanks and Vessels, Singapore Petroleum Corporation, Adani Port and Infrastructure, Kerr-McGee Oil & Gas, Beach Petroleum, EOG Resources, Terralliance, Santos, Europa Oil and M3nergy.

Companies already in India that bought data were: Reliance (both Mukesh and Anil), Cairn, BG, Premier Oil, ONGC, Oil India, Niko, Hardy, HOEC, Canoro and Oilex. The interest is huge, says a source.

Especially considering that 24 of the 55 blocks have no data. GX Technology, which is carrying out a 2D speculative survey of the east and west coasts, has posted its preliminary report (available to everyone) on the official NELP-VI website.

An additional (previously unavailable) 4000-km of 2D data requisitioned by the DGH from another department is also available. Praise for the DGHs handling of NELP-VI is evident all round.

The DGH is being very pro-active and has put in a lot of effort for this round, one potential Australian bidder tells us. I first started examining NELP acreage five years ago.

Theres a huge difference since then. We have no complaints.

They have bent over backwards to promote the round. Most praise goes to a DGH decision to appoint a single contact point for queries.

Ask them a question and we get a response the same day, he adds. They couldnt have gone further out of their way to clear up any ambiguities.

Uncomfortable questions about the boundaries of NELP-VI blocks D-22 and D-23 with Bangladesh receive an equally honest response. They said theres no problem but that if it becomes a problem they might revise the block area.