Fri, 23 May 2008
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesia has awarded five oil and gas exploration and development contracts to four companies including Italy's ENI, the energy ministry said Friday.

ENI Indonesia Ltd. was awarded the contract for a block in West Timor, ministry oil and gas director general Luluk Sumiarso was quoted by AFP as saying.

US-based Murphy Overseas Ventures was awarded the contract for the South Barito block in South Kalimantan, while Swedish oil-and-gas firm Lundin Oil and Gas B.V. was given the Rangkas block in West Java.

A consortium comprised of CNOOC South East Asia Ltd. and Petronas Carigali Overseas Sdn Bhd was awarded the contract for South East Palung Aru block, while Genting Oil and Gas Ltd. was given the Kasuri block in Papua.

Sumiarso said the contractors must pay a total of 24.4 million dollars in signature bonus, or advance payment for the rights to develop their allocated exploration areas.

The five contractors are planning to spend a total of 3.6 million dollars on geological and geophysical studies of the sites.

Indonesia produces almost one million barrels of oil per day, or just under the OPEC ceiling for the country, and his hoping to boost capacity in the next three years.

It is the only Southeast Asian member of the oil cartel but declining production levels have turned it into a net importer, with negative consequences for the budget as oil prices surge past the 130-dollar mark. (*)



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