Oil and gas exploration tender announced

Publish date: 29 April 2013

Energy and Resources Minister Simon Bridges today announced details of the Government’s second round to attract competing bids for oil and gas exploration permits.

Speaking at the Advantage NZ: 2013 Petroleum Conference, Mr Bridges said Block Offer 2013 is an important step towards realising the potential of New Zealand’s oil and gas resources.

"Block Offer 2013 presents a range of promising opportunities for investors and operators, who bring with them knowledge and experience in global exploration and production of oil and gas.

"The New Zealand Government is committed to long-term responsible and safe management of our resources. This will create jobs, boost incomes and provide a solid investment for future generations of New Zealanders.

"The block offer process is putting us, as a country, on the international stage," Mr Bridges said.

"Block Offer 2013 includes 189,000 square kilometres of offshore and over 1,500 square kilometres of onshore area.

The following areas will be open for bidding on 24 May:

  • three defined onshore blocks in Taranaki
  • two defined onshore blocks on the East Coast of the North Island
  • three offshore release areas in the Reinga-Northland Basins, Taranaki Basin and Great South-Canterbury Basins

Mr Bridges said that significant improvements to the regulatory regime are underway this year.

"The Government is committed to creating jobs and lifting economic growth, but not at any cost. We want to be sure that any development of our oil and gas resources is done efficiently, safely and in an environmentally responsible way.

"Permits awarded from Block Offer 2013 will be governed by the new Crown Minerals Act regime which comes into force on 24 May. The new Act provides for a significantly improved and streamlined two-tier system for permit management and puts into action recommendations of the Pike River Royal Commission," Mr Bridges said.

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