Seven foreign companies show interest in oil and gas exploration

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ISLAMABAD, Feb 16 (APP): Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Thursday informed the Senate that seven foreign companies have formally shown interest for making investment in oil and gas exploration sector, during last three financial years.
Replying to a question in the Upper house of the parliament, the minister said that out of seven, three companies have been granted three exploration licences, whereas request of remaining four foreign companies for grant of seven exploration licence would be included in the next bidding round.
He said that the said foreign companies are already working in Pakistan and have frequent meetings with the minister and officers concerned of the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources.
He said that the present government has taken various measures to attract foreign investors and create an investment friendly environment in the exploration and production (E&P) Sector.
Shahid Khaqan Abbasi said that Petroleum Policy 2012 was being implemented, which offered attractive terms and conditions for foreign as well as local investors.
He added 46 new blocks have been awarded under Petroleum Policy 2012.
He said that terrain security clearance process has been initiated for award of 32 new exploration blocks to E&P companies through bidding process.
The producer gas price under Petroleum Policy 2012 has been increased from 31% to 68% for different Zones, he added.
He said that for new exploration efforts in old blocks, supplemental agreements have been signed for conversion to 2012 Petroleum Policy’s better price.
The Bonanza of US$ 1/MMBTU has been introduced for first three discoveries in offshore area.
Khaqan Abbasi said that the E&P companies have been allowed to sale 10% of gas production to any buyer.
He added gas price of Petroleum Policy 2012 has been extended to entire incremental gas production, subject to meeting minimum threshold of 10% addition in existing maximum production of any day during six months with effect from July 31, 2013 or volume committed in approved development plan, whichever is higher.
He said that windfall levy has been reduced from 50 to 40 percent. and after the expiry of a lease period, the lease can be further renewed or re-granted for another five years subject to payment of an amount of 15% of well head value.
He said that ‘tight gas price’ under Tight Gas Policy 2011 has been improved by offering 20% premium over 2012 Petroleum Policy.