India round: 16 blocks awarded
AFP PHOTO/AIJAZ RAHI
By News wires
23 March 2012 19:04 GMT
Bids were received for 33 of 34 blocks -- eight are deep-water,
seven shallow water and 19 onshore -- offered under an auction in March 2011, Reuters reported.
The statement did not name the successful companies.
Previous licensing rounds were dominated by Indian state-run firms.
The cabinet rejected bids for 14 blocks, including one by
Essar Oil for an onshore
block, the statement said, without providing information for the remaining
three blocks it received bids for.
It cancelled the award to local firms of two blocks,
offered under the eighth round.
Asia's third-largest economy needs private capital for
exploration, and is encouraging local firms to buy stakes in foreign oil and
gas projects to meet its surging energy needs.
India imports about two-fifth of the crude it uses and is
keen to quickly tap domestic reservoirs.
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