Croatia reportedly intends to offer a total of 29 exploration blocks in the Adriatic Sea when it launches a licensing round in April.
eight will be on offer in the northern Adriatic and 21 in the central and
southern Adriatic, with the exploration areas ranging in size between 1000 and 1600 square kilometres, Economy
Minister Ivan Vrdoljak was reported as saying by Reuters on Monday.
data about the exploration areas will be made available to investors from 10 March
10, with the blocks in water depths ranging from 100 metres in the northern
part of the Adriatic to 1000 metres in the south.
said international tenders for the blocks would be published in April, with the
state's stake in oil and gas production to average 52%.
is in line with experience of other countries in the Mediterranean. We expect
the first exploration work to start at the beginning of next year and to take
up to five years, depending on the area," Vrdoljak said.
He said he
expected investment in oil and gas rigs in the Adriatic to be worth around $2.5
billion over the next five years.
natural gas production in Croatia to reach some 9 billion cubic metres, which
would be three times the country's annual consumption.
Croatia - the newest European Union member - covers some 65% of its gas needs
from its own fields in the northern Adriatic while it imports some 80% of its
crude products consumption.