PSCs for 18 blocks to be signed this week

Vol 9, PW 12 (22 Sep 05) News in Brief

Winners of NELP-V exploration acreage will meet at the Imperial Hotel in Delhi on (Friday) 23rd September to sign 18 PSCs with the government.

Thirteen blocks will be divided between ONGC, which won eight, and Reliance, which won five. Twenty blocks (six deepwater, two shallow water and twelve onland) were offered under NELP V, but the formal award of blocks AA-ONN-2003/2 and AA-ONN-2003/1 still awaits cabinet approval.

As expected, Mani Shankar Aiyar will shine in the limelight of the first NELP contracts signed since he took charge as oil minister over a year ago. Oil secretary Sushil Tripathi and other ministry officials will also be present.

On 19th September, Aiyar told a seminar organised by industry body Petrofed that the next licensing round (NELP-VI) would be held in January 2006. Petrofed was presenting a paper prepared by PWC on how to attract more international majors to Indian licensing rounds.