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BPTT bids for deep water blocks
Of the 11 blocks up for bid for energy exploration in this country’s deep water, the T&T Government received five bids on three blocks.
Among the bids:
• On block 23(a), three bids from BP, Niko and a consortium of Repsol, BHP and Total.
• On block 23(b), one bid from a consortium of BHP and Repsol.
• On block TTDAA14, one bid from BP.
Energy Minister Carolyn Seepersad-Bachan observed that given the composition of the bids, it signalled a return of major oil companies to this country’s Exploration and Drilling (E&D) portfolio.
The bids, said Seepersad-Bachan, will now be put through an extensive evaluation and the successful bids will announced on April 29. From there, the Attorney General will engage in a six week review process following which, the Production Sharing Contracts should be signed by mid-June 2011. “As I have said we believe there is significant oil in the deep water to be found and there is the potential for gas to also be discovered. If crude is found in commercial quantities that we estimate would be in excess of 350 million barrels of oil in place, then it will be developed.
“If gas is found it will be more of a challenge but we are looking at gas accumulations of high quantities in our deep water area. Aware of the economic challenges involved when you consider producing gas in the deep water, I have already indicated that the Government of Trinidad and Tobago will be prepared to consider floating LNG as an option to improve the economic viability of monetising that gas,” she said. She pointed out that there are 39 blocks in the deep water area but companies had the benefit of 3D seismic data.
The Energy Minister explained that as the Government moves forward with deep water exploration, it has taken steps to enhance our ability to respond to a major oil spill. Among those steps are a comprehensive review of, “Well Control Regulatory Framework to determine whether the current regime requires upgrading, to ensure the necessary safeguards are in place for the protection of people, assets and the environment. “I am advised by the Ministry’s HSE core that this process has advanced significantly and I am shortly to receive a brief on moving forward.
“In keeping with our drive at preventative action in the regulation of petroleum activity, we commenced a review of National Oil Spill Contingency Plan last year to ensure that the necessary response and recovery mechanisms are in place in the event of a major oil spill.” She noted that it’s the second successful bid round which the People’s Partnership has presided. Seepersad-Bachan said the Attorney General had completed the vetting process for the Shallow Water Bid Round and the Government anticipates signing off the successful bidders within the next ten days.
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