For the first time, Indian oil and gas major ONGC Videsh has taken interest in New Zealand’s oil and gas exploration, a media report said Tuesday.
Claimed by Energy and Resources Minister Simon Bridges to be the most successful round of block offers since the new system for awarding oil and gas exploration territory was instituted in 2012, the round sees 15 new exploration licences, nine offshore including US giant Chevron and six onshore, The New Zealand Herald reported.
ONGC Videsh has taken a 12-year permit in the Taranaki Basin.
Representatives of the company and Indian High Commissioner to New Zealand, Ravi Thakur, were present at the ceremony at the Beehive where the permits were awarded.
Norway’s state-owned Statoil has entered into a joint venture with Chevron on a 15-year exploration permit for the lightly explored Northland-Reinga basin.
The onshore permits were issued on the South Island’s West Coast, Hawke’s Bay region, where some exploration is already being done, Northland-Reinga and Pegasus basin.
This year’s award of 15 permits come with committed work programmes over the life of the permits, which extend as far out as 15 years, totalling $110 million.
The next round of proposed blocks for offer will be announced in March, 2015.
Published in The Indian Sun / Indian Magazine in Australia