Oman awards 4 new oil blocks

November 14, 2017

Oman’s Ministry of Oil and Gas on Tuesday signed four new exploration and production sharing agreements with four companies for developing concession blocks 30, 31, 49 and 52.

Concession blocks 30, 31 and 49 are onshore blocks, while block 52 is an offshore block.

Under these agreements, the companies have agreed to undertake geological and geophysical studies along with 2D and 3D seismic acquisition and drill wells during exploration periods.

Agreements were signed by H E Dr Mohammed bin Hamad al Rumhi, Minister of Oil and Gas, on behalf of the Omani government and by the representatives of the respective companies.

The first agreement was signed with Tethys Oil, a Swedish petroleum company, for developing block 49, which occupies an area of 15,439sqkm.

Speaking to reporters after signing the agreement, Magnus Nordin, managing director of Tethys Oil said, “We have already begun analysing the data provided to us by the ministry and after that we would be undertaking seismic studies to explore the possibilities of hydrocarbon reserves.”

Earlier, blocks 49 and 52 were relinquished by Irish oil firm Circle Oil as it failed to explore profitable hydrocarbon reserves that can be extracted.

On Tethys’ challenge to find reserves in blocks where other companies failed to do so, Nordin said, “We are partners in block 3 and 4, which were awarded to five or six operators and they all decided that nothing extractable can be found there. Today that block is producing around 14,000 barrels per day. So we believe that we are good at out of the box thinking and to look at data in a new way.”

On proposed investments, he said it would depend on exploration and production potentials but would certainly be in millions of dollars.
Second agreement was signed with ARA Petroleum for the concession block 31, which occupies an area of 8,528sqkm.

Third agreement was signed with a proposed joint-venture between Oman Oil Company Exploration and Production (OOCEP) and Occidental Oman for block 30, which occupies an area of 1,185sqkm.

Fourth agreement was signed with a joint-venture between Italian oil company Eni and OOCEP for developing offshore block-52, which occupies more than 90,000sqkm of area.