Pakistan to divest government interests in nine oil and gas fields

The Pakistan Privatisation Commission signed an agreement with a consortium of Gaffney, Cline, & Associates and Jardine Fleming Group of the UK, for financial advisory services for divestment of government working interest (GWI) in nine oil and gas-fields.


KARACHI�The Pakistan Privatisation Commission signed an agreement with a consortium of Gaffney, Cline, & Associates and Jardine Fleming Group of the UK, for financial advisory services for divestment of government working interest (GWI) in nine oil and gas-fields.

Nine parties had submitted proposals for financial advisory services, including Merrill Lynch International and Price Waterhouse Coopers Group UK.

The fields are Minwal, Pariwali, Turkwal, Badin-I, Badin-II, Mazarani, Adhi, Ratna, and Dhurnal.

The government has a 10-40% working interest in a number of oil and gas fields operated by private sector petroleum companies.

As part of the overall program of liberalization of the oil and gas sector, the government has moved on the divestment of its holdings in these nine fields. This divestment is part of the short-term plan prepared by the commission.

In accordance with the decision of the government, divestment of the GWI in the nine oil and gas concessions is expected to take place through a comparative bidding process, according to an official statement.

The GWI in Minwal, operated by Pakistan Oilfields Ltd. (POL), is 17.5%; Pariwali, operated by POL, 17.5%; Turkwal (Central Potowar), operated by POL, 20%; Badin-I, operated by Union Texas Petroleum Corp., 40%; Badin-II, operated by Union Texas Petroleum, 25%; Mazarani, operated by Pakistan Petroleum Ltd., 12.5%; Adhi, operated by Pakistan Petroleum, 11%; Ratna, operated by Orient Petroleum Inc., 25%; and Dhurnal, operated by Orient Petroleum, 25%.

It is expected that the financial advisers will bring the transactions to the market in the next 16 weeks and the bidding would be held shortly thereafter, said an official of the commission.

GCA and its partner said Tuesday, "While the package being offered represents an opportunity for existing participants in Pakistan's upstream petroleum sector to increase their holdings, it is also an ideal opportunity for new players to enter."

Further details are expected early in the first quarter of 2001.

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