India describes two open-acreage contracts

The government of India will offer two types of oil and gas contract, based on the span of operation, under its new Open-Acreage Licensing Program (OGJ Online, Mar. 8, 2017).

The Petroleum Operations Contract (POC) allows the full range of exploration, development, and production, according to documents newly published by the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons.

POCs have exploration terms of 8-10 years, including extensions. Total contract terms are 20 years.

The Reconnaissance Contract (RC) allows only exploration, including geological and geophysical work and drilling. It has a 2-year term with a provision for a 1-year extension.

The DGH will not issue RCs in areas where it deems available geological and geophysical data to be sufficient.

Operators will be able to upgrade RCs to POCs, which are based on revenue-sharing. In those cases, DGH will have the right to license and make available to other bidders data acquired under thusly “migrated” RCs.

DGH will accept expressions of interest in unlicensed areas from operators during “windows” ending on May 15 and Nov. 15 each year.

Operators can define blocks in their expressions of interest, which DGH will review and make available for competitive bidding.

DGH said it will try to complete its reviews of expressions of interest and publish a “notice inviting offer” for bidding within 30 days of closure of each window.

Bidding periods will be 60 days. DGH will try to evaluate bids and award blocks within 10 weeks of bid-closing dates.

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