Afghanistan to Hold First-Ever Hydrocarbon Bidding Round

The Ministry of Mines for the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan announced today that the country is holding the first-ever Afghan hydrocarbon bidding round. The round includes three large onshore blocks, which have established hydrocarbon accumulations.

The three blocks are located in the northwest of the country and encompass the Jangalikalan Block and Juma-Bashikurd Block with proven gas fields, and the Kashkari Block with proven oil accumulations.

Spanning 493,964 acres (1,999 square kilometers), the Jangalikalan Block contains the Jangalikalan gas field with estimated recoverable reserves of 671 Bcf (19 Bcm) of natural gas.

With recoverable reserves topping 1,165 Bcf (33 Bcm) of natural gas, the Juma-Bashikurd Block holds both the Juma and the Bashikurd gas fields. The block measures some 459,863 acres (1,861 square kilometers).

With three proven oil fields, the Kashakari Block contains the Kashkari, Angoat and Aqdarya oil fields. The 425,763-acre (1,723-square-kilometer) Kashakari Block boasts remaining recoverable reserves of 64.4 MMbo, as well as 143.8 MMbo of possible reserves.

Block Fields Oil/Gas
Jangalikalan  Jangalikalan Gas
Juma-Bashikurd Juma Gas
  Bashikurd Gas
Kashkari Kashkari Oil
  Angoat Oil
  Aqdarya Oil

The majority of the oil and gas fields were discovered during the Soviet-led exploration campaigns in the 1970s. Discovered in 1967, the Angoat oil field is the only field in the group that has been in sustained production. The Kashkari field produced moderate amounts of oil for six months in the late 1980s. The rest of the fields have not been brought into production.

The Exploration and Production Sharing Contracts awarded from the bidding round will be evaluated according to royalties, additional work commitment, bonus and technical competence. The pre-qualified winner of the bidding round is awarded the right to explore, and should a commercial discovery be found, develop and produce hydrocarbons on the block.

The Afghan Ministry of Mines will hold informational presentations in Dubai, London, Calgary, Houston and Singapore in April and May 2009. Online registration is available, as well.