Maturing planet, tougher terms change upstream landscape

These are dramatic times upstream-more competitive and demanding.Geological potential is not as exciting, and contract/fiscal terms are tougher relative to the dwindling potential.Furthermore, exploration acreage has taken on the characteristics of a commodity. This stems from stiff competition between companies for exploration opportunities. There are more companies than ever before seeking opportunities worldwide, and never have so many countries been open for business.Each year, 40-50 countries conduct official license rounds or "block offers." Of these, nearly one third were not even "open" 10 years ago. In addition to official license rounds, many countries entertain offers and negot...

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