Despite losing out in competitive bidding, ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL), the overseas arm of state explorer Oil and Natural Gas Corp, may still get a stake in a deep-sea block in Myanmar.
OVL had bid for two of the 10 shallow-water blocks that Myanmar had auctioned in December but drew a blank when the fields were awarded on March 26.
“We had a pre-bid understanding with an international oil company that if we were to win any shallow-water acreage, they will farm-in (pick up stake). Similarly, in case that company was successful in picking up any of the deep-sea acreages it bid for, we would get a stake,” OVL Managing Director S P Garg said.
Garg refused to identify the company and said OVL could get up to 49% in the deep-water oil and gas block won by the international company.
London-based Ophir Energy plc and Total of France each won a deep-sea block in Myanmar’s maiden licensing round. While Ophir won the AD-3 deep-water block, Total won the YWB block. Italy’s Eni picked up deep-water blocks MD-2 and MD-4 on its own.
The other deep-sea blocks went to groups of global energy majors and it is unlikely that OVL had a pre-bid understanding with them.
Anglo-Dutch supermajor Royal Dutch Shell was awarded deep-water blocks AD-9, AD-11 and MD-5 as operator, all alongside Japan’s Mitsui Oil Exploration, according to Myanmar’s Ministry of Energy.
US giant ConocoPhillips won deep-water block AD-10 with Norwegian state-owned Statoil as operator.