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OIL signs contract for 12 oil blocks

OIL signs contract for 12 oil blocks
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State-owned ONGC and Oil India Ltd alongside private sector Vedanta Ltd on Tuesday walked away with almost all of the oil blocks auctioned in the latest licensing round as part of the government's effort to raise domestic production.

New Delhi: State-owned ONGC and Oil India Ltd alongside private sector Vedanta Ltd on Tuesday walked away with almost all of the oil blocks auctioned in the latest licensing round as part of the government's effort to raise domestic production.

The winners of Open Acreage Licensing Policy (OALP) Round II and III, which closed earlier this year, signed exploration and production contracts with the government at a function here on Tuesday.

Speaking on the occasion, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said more production of oil and gas is priority of Modi-2.0 government as it looks to meet its rising energy demand of fast-growing economy.

"There is possibility of $1 billion in OALP-II and III," he said. Oil India Ltd signed up for the 12 out of 32 oil and gas exploration blocks it won in the twin rounds that ran parallelly because OALP-II was delayed.

Vedanta Ltd walked away with 10 and Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) got eight blocks. Reliance Industries and its British partner BP Plc signed a contract for the sole KG basin gas they had bid, while Indian Oil Corp (IOC) too got one block.

Reliance-BP combine outbid ONGC in one Krishna Godavari basin block in the Bay of Bengal.

This is an area that ONGC had previously relinquished and is said to hold natural gas prospects. According to the DGH, OIL won 6 out of the 14 blocks on offer in OALP-II, while Vedanta walked away with five.

ONGC, Reliance-BP and IOC won one block each. In OALP-III, ONGC won 7 blocks while OIL got 6 and Vedanta the remaining five.

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