Plans to adopt a consortium approach for bidding

Richa Mishra

E&P activities

Currently,

the company is involved in exploration activities over acreage of more than 83,600 sq km

GAIL also

plans to submit by September its bid for exploration and development of two gas fields in Ethiopia

New Delhi, June 16

GAIL (India) Ltd, which plans to invest approximately Rs 800 crore in exploration and production (E&P) activities over the next three years, is looking at oil and gas fields in Madagascar, Africa.

The company plans to adopt a consortium approach for bidding in Madagascar, a senior GAIL executive said. He, however, declined to comment on the possible consortium partners.

Currently, the company is involved in exploration activities over acreage of more than 83,600 sq km. The executive told

Business Line

that the data is being evaluated by a high-level team of the company.

An announcement for the blocks was made by the Office des Mines Nationales et des Industries Strategiques in Madagascar (OMNIS) on the opening of a new License Round over the Morondava Basin, offshore West Madagascar in October 2005.

OMNIS has scheduled the closing date for applications as September 25. It is expected that licences will be granted soon thereafter, the executive said.

GAIL also plans to submit by September its bid for exploration and development of Calub and Hilala gas field in Ogaden onland basin in Ethiopia. In April, GAIL was short listed by the Ministry of Mines and Energy, Government of Ethiopia to participate in the bidding process for exploration and development of the two gas fields in Ethiopia.

Expression of interest

GAIL had responded to a notice published by the Ministry of Mines and Energy, Government of Ethiopia in March 2006 for the development of two gas condensate fields, which are estimated to contain about 4 trillion cubic feet of gas. GAIL had submitted its "Expression of Interest" together with Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation Ltd (GSPC).

At present, GAIL has got stake in the A-1 and A-3 blocks in Myanmar and Block 56 in Oman.

GAIL along with GSPC has also struck oil in the Cambay basin block CB-ONN-2000/1.

Domestic activities

In the domestic E&P activities, GAIL holds a participating interest in 16 exploration blocks, comprising two New Exploration Licensing Policy-I (NELP I) blocks, five NELP II blocks, two NELP IV blocks, three NELP V blocks and three `farm-in' blocks. Out of these, seven are on-land blocks and nine are offshore blocks.

Related Stories:
Shell offers 15% stake to GAIL in Egypt project
Myanmar gas: India works out route bypassing Bangladesh

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated June 17, 2006)
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