Australia Awards Five Offshore Permits



Australian Resources Minister Ian Macfarlane has announced the award of five new offshore petroleum exploration permits: two off Tasmania, one off Western Australia and two in the Territory of Ashmore and Cartier Islands.

"There is currently very strong interest being shown by petroleum explorers in Australian offshore areas," said Mr. Macfarlane. "It's obviously important for the future economic wellbeing of the nation that petroleum explorers make further petroleum discoveries so the high level of interest is a positive sign of investment interest," he said.

The new permits awarded are as follows:

  • Two in the Bass Basin off Tasmania, situated close to southeast Australian gas markets in shallow water, to Bass Strait Oil Company Ltd;
  • One in the Browse Basin off Western Australia, a proven major hydrocarbon province, to Nexus Energy Australia NL; and
  • Two in the Bonaparte Basin, in the Territory of Ashmore and Cartier Islands off north-western Western Australia, close to areas with demonstrated commercial potential, one to Eni Australia Limited and the other to Auralandia N.L., Natural Gas Corporation Pty Ltd and Gascorp Inc.
"Every year the Australian Government releases a round of offshore areas for petroleum exploration as part of our commitment to ensuring the development potential of these areas is properly identified."

"This provides a steady supply of new areas for bidding in Australia's vast offshore sedimentary basins. The bidders also draw heavily on Geoscience Australia's pre-competitive data which is maintained and updated through government support."

"The annual acreage release and the recent additional $61 million put into updating Geoscience Australia's pre-competitive data underlines the Government's commitment to encouraging further petroleum exploration," said Mr. Macfarlane.

For the award of exploration permits in Australia's offshore areas, applicants are required to nominate a guaranteed minimum exploration program for each of the first three years of the permit term. Permits are initially granted for six years.

Permit T/42P (released as T04-3), in the Bass Basin off Tasmania, has been awarded to Bass Strait Oil Company Ltd. The company proposed a guaranteed work program of studies and 525 km of new 2D seismic surveying, with an estimated cost of $1.39 million. The secondary work program consists of studies and one exploration well, at an estimated cost of $15.6 million. There was one other bid for the area.

Permit T/43P (released as T04-4), in the Bass Basin off Tasmania, has been awarded to Bass Strait Oil Company Ltd. The company proposed a guaranteed work program of studies and 575 km of new 2D seismic surveying, at an estimated cost of $1.46 million. The secondary work program consists of studies and one exploration well, at an estimated cost of $15.6 million. There was one other bid for the area.

Permit WA-377-P (released as W05-4), in the Browse Basin, has been awarded to Nexus Energy Australia NL. The company proposed a guaranteed work program of studies, the purchase of 150 sq km of 3D seismic data and one exploration well, at an estimated cost of $21.3 million. The secondary work program consists of studies and one exploration well, at an estimated cost of $20.3 million. There were three other bids for the area.

Permit AC/P38 (released as AC04-1), in the Bonaparte Basin, has been awarded to Eni Australia Limited. The company proposed a guaranteed work program of studies and 1000 sq km of 3D seismic data reprocessing, at an estimated cost of $2.8 million. The secondary work program consists of studies and one exploration well, at an estimated cost of $20.3 million. There was one other bid for the area.

Permit AC/P39 (released as AC05-1), in the Bonaparte Basin, has been awarded to Auralandia N.L., National Gas Corporation Pty Ltd and Gascorp Inc. The companies proposed a guaranteed work program of studies and one exploration well, at an estimated cost of $12.9 million. The secondary work program consists of studies, at an estimated cost of $0.6 million. There was one other bid for the area.

RELATED COMPANIES
For More Information on the Offshore Rig Fleet:
RigLogix can provide the information that you need about the offshore rig fleet, whether you need utilization and industry trends or detailed reports on future rig contracts. Subscribing to RigLogix will allow you to access dozens of prebuilt reports and build your own custom reports using hundreds of available data columns. For more information about a RigLogix subscription, visit www.riglogix.com.