Guyana eyes India’s participation in oil blocks’ auction


President Dr. Irfaan Ali disclosed that he is engaging the Indian government on their possible  participation in the ongoing auction for new oil blocks offshore Guyana.

Though India has expressed interest in a long-term purchase agreement for Guyana’s oil resources, President Ali said that he and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi are also discussing other potential areas for partnerships in the oil and gas sector.

“We are looking at ways we can have a stronger government to government partnership in the sector, not only about crude oil lifts but to see whether there is enough appetite in the system to participate in the bid round for oil blocks,” President Ali said during an interview with the Asian News International network.

The Guyanese Head of State said that the two governments are also exploring how Guyana’s natural gas resources can be used.

President Dr. Irfaan Ali (left) with India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi (centre). Also in photo is Surinamese President Chandrikapersad Santokhi (Photo: News Room/ January 9, 2023)

The bid round for 14 new oil blocks was launched last December and it is expected to close by April, 2023. Guyana’s government hopes to award contracts by the end of May 2023.

The oil blocks on auction are for shallow and deep water areas.

There will be separate requirements for qualification to participate in deepwater versus shallow water blocks for tender with a higher bar set for deepwater areas, which reflects the capital-intensive nature of deepwater exploration and production (E&P) and the highly specialised technical competence required for deepwater E&P activities

There will be a minimum signature bonus requirement of US$10 million for shallow water and US$20 million for deepwater blocks.

This licensing round allows the Government of Guyana to create and administer an improved fiscal and regulatory framework that is driven by good international oil field practices and standards, the President pointed out.

A statement from India’s Ministry of External Affairs, following the talks between President Ali and Prime Minister Modi on Monday, highlighted that energy cooperation was part of the “comprehensive discussions” between the two leaders.

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