New Oil and Gas Block Licensing Policy

2019 ias preliminary exam test series

Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan introduced a new oil and gas block licensing policy that is expected to open up 2.8 million square kilometres of sedimentary basins to exploration and production activities.

He inaugurated the government’s Open Acreage Licensing Policy (OALP) and the National Data Repository.

The OALP, a part of the government’s Hydrocarbon Exploration and Licensing Policy (HELP), gives exploration companies the option to select the exploration blocks on their own, without having to wait for the formal bid round from the Government. The company then submits an application to the government, which puts that block up for bid.

The new policy will open up 2.8 million square kilometres of sedimentary basins for exploration and eventual production.

A single license to explore all forms of hydrocarbons, no oil cess, reduced rates of royalty are just few of the many enabling provisions which will stimulate investments in the sector.

Recently-concluded discovered small field (DSF) bid round, though small, was encouraging as it gave an insight into the investment appetite of the sector.

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