- New domestic Natural Gas Pricing Guidelines: As part of pricing reforms for the natural gas sector, the government approved a new pricing scheme to further align domestic prices with international market prices and to raise investment for the sector. The same was notified on 18.10.2014 with a revision cycle of every six months based on the prevailing hub prices of United States, Alberta, United Kingdom and Russia. The price determined under this policy shall be applicable to all sectors uniformly. Further, under this policy government has decided to offer a premium on the gas to be produced from Deep water areas, Ultra deep water areas and High Pressure High Temperature (HPHT) areas.
- Policy Framework for Relaxations, Extensions and clarifications at the Development and Production stage under PSC regime for early Monetization of hydrocarbon discoveries:
- Under this policy 30 long pending issues have been resolved since the commencement of the policy.
- The decision taken in accordance with policy will further help in drilling appraisal wells after submission of DoC in five blocks. This will also help in probing additional reservoir extent and submission of robust field development plan in three blocks.
- There were 12 blocks where clearances were not accorded in entire block area or in part of block area because of overlapping with special economic zone, reserve forest, naval exercise area, DRDO danger zone, national parks and firing range of Defence. The cases in 11 blocks have been resolved and the case in one block is under consideration.
- The policy framework has also helped in taking technical decisions based in merits for swapping of 2D seismic work program with 3D seismic work program and vice-versa in five blocks.
- Site Restoration Guidelines on petroleum operations: Government of India has constituted a committee for formulation of Site Restoration guidelines for petroleum operations. The committee met four times and shared their learning and experiences with respect to Field abandonment and Site Restoration. An internationally reputed consultant has been hired. The consultant has submitted draft report, which was reviewed by the committee members.
- Standing Committee on Petroleum Industry Practices: Government of India has constituted Standing Committee on Petroleum Industry Practices, to identify the areas requiring codification of “Good International Petroleum Industry Practices (GIPIP)” and to prepare national codes for petroleum operations. An internationally reputed consultant has been hired. The consultant has submitted the interim reports and ccomments of the Standing Committee members have been offered to the consultant for suitably modifying the reports.
- Exploration in Mining lease areas: Government of India has formulated a policy to allow exploration in Mining Lease Area with cost recovery subject to establishment of commerciality. Under this policy more than 31 discoveries may be monetized in four Blocks/fields viz. RJ-ON-90/1, KG-DWN-98/3, RJ-ON/6 and Ravva. The discoveries are under various stages, from submission of Potential Commercial Interest (PCI) to appraisal.
- Policy for extension of Production Sharing Contracts (PSC): To enable Oil and Gas companies recover the balance reserves from fields after expiry of PSC, government of India is formulating a policy for grant of extension to Production Sharing Contracts signed by Government for small and medium size discovered fields/blocks with Private Joint Ventures. The policy is in advanced stage of finalization.
- Policy Guidelines of Exploration and Exploitation of Shale Gas and Oil: Shale Gas and Oil Policy was announced on 14th Oct 2013 and under this Policy the right to exploration and exploitation of Shale Gas & Oil has been granted to the National Oil Companies (NOCs) holding Petroleum Exploration License (PEL)/Petroleum Mining Lease (PML) granted under the nomination regime. NOCs has identified 55 blocks for Assessment Studies during the Phase-I of three years. Currently 12 wells have been drilled by ONGC and results are encouraging. Further NOCs will identify 80 blocks under Phase-II of three years and 55 blocks in Phase-III. Each Phase will culminate in a development and production phase depending on the results of the Assessment Phase.
- Uniform Licensing Policy: Government of India in considering Uniform Licensing Policy (ULP) to facilitate exploration and exploitation of both conventional and unconventional hydrocarbon resources together, in an awarded block.
MARGINAL FIELD POLICY:
The exploration and exploitation of hydrocarbons is a keystone for India in achieving energy security. To reduce the import dependency, it is pertinent to effectively exploit the established reserves and increase the indigenous production. It was observed that many discoveries made in Nomination blocks are not monetized and are categorized as Marginal fields. Government of India is announced offering of such fields through Marginal Field Policy. This policy will help to monetized more than 85 MMT (O+OEG) reserves. It will boost production and provide increased revenue to both government and contractor.
Features of Marginal Field Policy :
- Revenue Sharing contract
- Single licence for Conventional & Non-conventional hydrocarbon
- Contract duration for 20 years or till the economic life of the field
- No restriction on exploration activity during contract period
- Eligibility for Bidding – No carried interest of NOCs
- Crude Oil & Gas Pricing and Sale on arms length basis
- Incentives – Zero Oil Cess, Royalty rates of NELP, Tax holiday, Site Restoration Scheme & Custom duty exemption like NELP
RE-ASSESSMENT OF PROGNOSTICATED HYDROCARBON RESOURCES OF INDIA
The hydrocarbon resource assessment for 15 sedimentary basins (combining Category-I, II and III basins) was carried out approx. two decades ago and became overdue at present in light of enormous data acquired during Pre-NELP and NELP rounds of G&G activities. During the course of implementation of work program in Pre-NELP Blocks, NELP Blocks, nominations blocks awarded to NOC’s and other exploration and production activities, substantial geo-scientific data have been generated. To re-assess the hydrocarbon resources of India, Government has constituted a Multi Organization Team (MOT) with updated information on Indian sedimentary basins. The exercise will cover all the 26 sedimentary basins of India. It will generate better understanding of Indian sedimentary basins with integration of data and new interpretation techniques. These relook at basins will assist in future planning of exploration activities. Currently Mumbai Offshore, Satpura-South Rewa, Kerala-Konkan, Krishna-Godavari, Mahanadi, Cambay, Rajasthan and Vindhyan basin are under study.
ENCOURAGING E&P ACTIVITIES IN NORTH EAST INDIA
The first oil in India was found in North East part of India 150 years. However that the Oil and Gas sector development has been full of challenges and not been up to the mark in North Eastern India. A need was felt to identify the reasons for the slow development of oil and gas sector. A Consultant was hired to conduct a specialized study for framing a policy for encouraging hydrocarbon exploration and production activities in the North East Region of India. The Consultancy study is completed in mid 2015. The report is submitted and is under consideration for practical workable solutions with definite action plan.
MULTI CLIENT GEO-SCIENTIFIC SURVEYS:
Seven proposals have been received for generation of approx 107386 LKM 2D Seismic data, under the policy for Geo-scientific data generation for hydrocarbons in Indian sedimentary Basins, through Non-exclusive Multi-Client Geo-scientific surveys/ Activities. All the seven proposals have received clearances from Ministry of Defence (MOD) and Ministry of Home Affairs (MOHA). DGH has issued provisional letter of consent to all the proposals.
COVERAGE OF THE UN-APPRAISED SEDIMENTARY AREAS BY 2D SEISMIC SURVEY:
To study the Un-appraised sedimentary areas M/s ONGC and M/s OIL on behalf of Government is carrying out Seismic studies. Currently the reconnaissance study is completed evaluation of tender of Seismic acquisition is under progress.
NATIONAL DATA REPOSITORY (NDR)
To consolidate and store all the Geoscientific data available in the country and to create a base for Open Acreage Licensing Policy, GoI has taken initiative to build National Data Repository (NDR) for Oil and Gas Industry in India. Contract for establishment and operationalization of NDR was awarded to M/s Halliburton Offshore Services Inc. on 28.02.2014. Site preparation work for NDR project at 5th and 6th floor of DGH office, Noida and Commissioning of Hardware and integration of Software at the site has been completed. User Accepting Test (UAT) is successfully completed. Initial population of data is in progress and the priority data pertaining to reassessment of 26 sedimentary basins is being loaded.
OPEN ACREAGE LICENSING POLICY (OALP)
Setting up of National Data Repository is one of the milestones achieved for Open Acreage Licensing Policy. The Government plans to move to the OALP regime soon. OALP will enable upstream companies to bid for any oil and gas block without waiting for the announcement of bidding as under current model of offering
UNIFORM LICENSING POLICY (ULP):
To enable E&P operators to explore and extract all types of hydrocarbon resources covered under the Oilfields Regulation and Development (ORD) Act, 1948, and Petroleum and Natural Gas (PNG) Rules, 1959, Government of India in considering Uniform Licensing Policy (ULP). This will facilitate exploration and exploitation of both conventional and unconventional hydrocarbon resources together, in an awarded block under one PEL / PML.