Rio Negro Aiming to Tender 5 Blocks in June

Argentina's Rio Negro province is putting the finishing touches on a program to tender 18 hydrocarbons blocks and plans to call for bids on the first five in the last week of June, Rio Negro hydrocarbons ministry director Tamara Perez Balda told BNamericas.

The government will present general technical information related to the blocks on May 23 in Houston and in Buenos Aires in mid-June.

More detailed technical information will be available to potential bidders for US$2,000-10,000 depending on the block, Perez said.

A government statement said some of the blocks have shown positive results in tests while others that have previously shown negative results still have the potential for exploration in "other directions and depths."

After opening the tender process, the government will accept bids for 60 days and will then award the contracts within 30 days, Perez said.

The government expects the blocks to produce more oil than natural gas, although there were some gas discoveries on certain blocks last December, Perez added.

The provincial government will call for bids on five more blocks in October and tender the remaining eight in the first months of 2007, the statement said.

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