Nigeria launches tender for 12 new oil blocks, promises fair process

Nigeria launches tender for 12 new oil blocks, promises fair process
Nigeria launches tender for 12 new oil blocks, promises fair process

Nigeria is inviting tenders from international investors with financial and technical capacity for 12 onshore and deep-water oil blocks, its oil regulator said in a speech yesterday at a global oil conference. oil in Houston, Texas.

Africa’s largest oil producer opened this year’s licensing round on April 29, seeking to deepen exploitation of crude oil reserves estimated at 37.5 billion barrels and natural gas reserves estimated at 209.26 trillion cubic feet.

“Nigeria is committed to conducting the licensing cycle in a fair, competitive and transparent manner and ensuring a level playing field for domestic and international investors,” said Gbenga Komolafe, Director of Nigerian Upstream Petroleum. Regulatory Commission (NUPRC).

Some investors have been reluctant to participate in previous tenders due to the lack of transparency in the award process, leading to oil fields being awarded to companies without the capacity to drill them. This situation ultimately led to threats of cancellation of the awards.

Mr Komolafe said that in addition to these blocks, the seven deepwater blocks from the 2022 mini-tender will also be awarded under this licensing round.

This will bring the total number of oil blocks offered to investors to 19 in 2024.

Besides technical and commercial capabilities, the regulator said it will pay attention to how bidders plan to align with the country’s targets on net carbon emissions, eliminate flaring and avoid to pollute rivers and agricultural lands.

Nigeria, a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), has seen its oil production fall from around 2 million barrels a decade ago to just over 1.3 million barrels per day.

Major oil companies are abandoning onshore fields prone to sabotage and frequent spill claims to focus on deepwater fields, where disruptions are less frequent. (Reporting by Isaac Anyaogu; Editing by Toby Chopra)

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