Petroecuador Prepares for Ninth Licensing Round

Petroecuador is laying the groundwork for the ninth round of exploration and production concessions this October, the company's head of contract administration said Wednesday. The concessions involve 2.6 million hectares, and imply an investment of $262 million, Francisco Rendon said.

In all, 13 blocks measuring 200,000 hectares each will be up for auction. Eleven of these will be in the provinces of Pastaza, Morona Santiago and Zamora Chinchipe and Amazonia, while two will be in the Gulf of Guayaquil, Rendon added. Foreign oil majors such as Shell, ExxonMobil and Occidental Petroleum Corp. have all expressed interest in bidding.