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CCEA approved exploration of 16 blocks under the 9th Round of the New Exploration Licensing Policy

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), on 23 March 2012, granted the exploration of 16 blocks under the Ninth Round of the New Exploration Licensing Policy (NELP). The committee, however, rejected bids for 10 blocks owing to lower profit to the government.

The Empowered Committee of Secretaries (ECS) in its proposal, had recommended award of 16 blocks to the top bidder.

However, no decision was taken regarding the licensing for the blocks MB-DWN-2010 and MB-OSN-2010/2, as it required the consent of Defence Ministry. Defence Ministry’s clearance for the two blocks is still awaited.

The ECS, at its meeting held on 16 February 2012, took up 74 bids for the 33 blocks offered under the NELP-IX round. The committee in its final report recommended to award 16 blocks to the top bidders. 

The decision of awarding the license is likely to impact companies like Reliance Industries Ltd. (RIL), Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), Oil India, Hindustan Petroleum Corporation, Bharat Petro Resources and Indian Oil Corporation.

The blocks recommended for award by the ECS include two shallow water and 12 on land blocks. The ECS rejected bids for seven deep water blocks and three shallow water blocks.



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