India launches global bids for discovered small oil and gas fields

India, in its bid to boost domestic oil and gas production, has launched a new bidding round for discovered yet commercially underdeveloped fields.

A government statement said that 46 contract areas consisting of 67 different small fields are being offered to investors for exploration and production.

“Bids are being invited for developing and monetizing these contract areas having 625 million barrels of oil and oil equivalent gas in-place volumes spread over 1,500 square kilometers in onland, shallow water and deepwater areas,” the statement said.

Highlight of the bidding process:

  • Single license to extract and exploit conventional and unconventional hydrocarbon fields
  • New fiscal regime based on revenue sharing model
  • Operational autonomy and flexibility for unit development in case of reservoirs extending beyond contract area or for joint development of common infrastructure
  • Exemption of oil cess and custom duty
  • Full freedom for marketing and pricing for production from the awarded contract areas
  • Royalty in line with earlier New Exploration Licensing Policy (NELP)
  • Technical capability is not a pre-qualification criterion for bidding
  • Exploration allowed during entire contract period (20 years), which is mutually extendable for up to 10 years
  • No restriction on exploration activity during the contract period
  • Information Docket to be made available at e-bidding gateway
  • Physical data centers with interpretation facility would be set up in India and various others international locations where prospective bidders can access data
  • Discovered fields to be offered with no upfront signature bonus



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