Indonesia awards nine oil, gas blocks in latest bid round

Indonesia awarded nine oil and natural gas blocks in the country’s first bidding round this year, with investors committed to spending $106 million during the first 3 years of exploration.

The offshore Babar Selaru block in the Arafuru Sea near Papua province was awarded to a consortium of Inpex and Japan Oil, Gas & Metal National Corp.

A consortium of Eni SPA, GFD Suez, Statoil, and Niko Resources won an offshore block in North Ganal, Makassar strait.

Statoil and Niko jointly secured another block offshore Halmahera island, while Prabu Energy won the Ranau onshore block in Sumatra.

Murphy Oil Corp. secured the rights to explore Semay VI offshore block in West Papua, while Forbes Citra Nusantara won the northeast Madura offshore block.

Karya Inti Petroleum, Geraldo Energy, and Cahaya Sumber Energy Pratama each won a block in Kalimantan on Borneo island.

The energy ministry did not provide details of the blocks’ reserves.

Earlier this week, Indonesia’s upstream oil and gas regulator BPMigas announced plans to summon 149 current contractors to discuss why they have failed to meet their exploration commitments.

BPMigas Deputy Chief Hardiono said only 30 of the 179 contractors have fulfilled their exploration commitments.

“We’ll summon the remaining 149 contractors to ask them the reasons why they have done nothing in their work areas. We want to know the problems,” Hardiono said.

Indonesia’s government has set a production target of 1 million b/d of oil for 2013. However, the country is currently struggling to reach an interim output target of 945,000 b/d.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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