Ocean Energy Wins OPL 256 Offshore Nigeria

Ocean Energy was awarded OPL 256 block during the selective bidding process held by the Nigerian Department of Petroleum Resources. The block is located in the Gulf of Guinea between OPL 246 and OPL 245, operated by TotalFinaElf and Shell, respectively. The company reportedly paid $145 million for the license fee on this deepwater block. The issue of OPL 256 became controversial after the petroleum ministry said last month it would offer the block in a selective bidding round instead of offering in the next open licensing round to be held in 2003.