Indonesia awards contracts, opens new bidding round

Indonesia's Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources announced the award of 22 new oil and gas blocks to investors, out of the 25 it offered for bids.

Eric Watkins
Oil Diplomacy Editor

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 19 -- Indonesia's Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources announced the award of 22 new oil and gas blocks to investors, out of the 25 it offered for bids.

The government awarded the Arafura Sea Block to ConocoPhillips, the offshore West Papua I and III blocks to Chevron Corp., and the offshore North Sumbawa II block to Husky Energy Inc.

Malaysia's Ranhill Energy Sdn. Bhd. won the onshore South CPP block, while India's Gujarat State Petroleum Corp. and Essar E&P Ltd. together were awarded the Southeast Tungkal Block.

Australia's Pearl Energy and Australian Worldwide Exploration Ltd. won the East Muriah Block, and China's Sinochem Petroleum E&P won the Madura Block.

The government, which awarded the remaining blocks to lesser-known investors, said investors who won the new blocks plan to invest a total of $330 million during the first 3 years of exploration.

New tenders
Even as it made the awards, the government also opened a new tender for 31 oil and gas blocks onshore and offshore. The new tender document will be provided on Nov. 10, and the deadline for bids will be in January, 2009, for some areas, and in March.

Blocks are available in: Sumatra. One onshore-offshore block and four blocks off northern Sumatra; two onshore blocks in central Sumatra; and two onshore blocks in southern Sumatra.

Kalimantan. Two onshore blocks in southern Kalimantan; and one block onshore and two off eastern Kalimantan;

Papua. One onshore-offshore block in northern Papua, and five off western Papua.

Other offshore blocks include the N. Surumana Block in the Makassar Strait, the Sermata Block in the West Arafura Sea, two blocks off southern Sulawesi, the Karaeng Block off northern Selayar, the SE Halmahera-SW Kofiau Block off South Halmahera, the East Bula Block off Seram, the Penyu block off West Natuna, and the Sokang Block off East Natuna.

Other onshore blocks include the South East Madura onshore-offshore block in East Java; and the Terumbu Block, which is partly onshore-offshore Madura.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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