Sri Lanka commences Marketing Mannar basin Exploration blocks
In line with the Government’s plan to accelerate the development of the Mannar basin gas and condensate reserves, the Ministry of Petroleum Resources Development has signed a marketing agreement with US-based IHS Energy, one of the world’s largest energy consultancy firms, on December 14, 2016. This agreement, pursuant to a Cabinet approval received earlier this year, aims to develop a marketing strategy, bid documents and partner selection criteria for consideration by the Government of Sri Lanka specifically for Block M2(http://www.prds-srilanka.com/pdfs/SL_Block_Map.pdf), recently relinquished by Cairn India. Block M2 contains two gas discoveries and is rich in data. Since several major oil and gas companies have also expressed interest in the broader deep water Mannar basin, the Ministry is implementing further seismic and airborne gravity/magnetic data acquisition programmes prior to Sri Lanka’s next international licensing round, scheduled for Q3 2017. In the meantime, IHS will be assisting with the marketing of the extensive M2 3D seismic and well log data, conducting preliminary discussions with interested parties, and recommending the structure of a “mini bid round” for M2, aimed at selecting an operator for the block by the end of November 2017.