British Gas Plans To Sell Cambay Basin Block Stake

New Delhi, October 23: | Updated: Oct 24 2002, 05:30am hrs
While British oil and gas major BG Group is determined to become operator at Panna-Mukta and Tapti oil and gas fields, it wants to exit offshore Gujarat exploration block CB-OS/1.

Bg, which is operator in the cambay basin block with62.64 per cent interest, wants to sell its majority stake in the offshore block as it was not in conformity with the oil and gas portfolio held by the group.

BG has written to director general of hydrocarbons (DGH) that it was no longer interested in development of CB-OS/1 exploration block in the Gulf of Cambay, which was part of the $350 million deal to buy Enron Oil and Gas India Ltds assets in India, sources said. When contacted, a senior BG India official confirmed the corporations desire to exit the block. It (the block) does not fit in the kind of exploration acreages BG operates.

The official hinted that the three-well drill programme had not yielded significant hydrocarbon discovery and that was one of the reasons it had put its stake for sale. Of the three wells drilled, BG had encountered presence of small quantities of hydrocarbons in one of the wells. He refused to confirm or deny if BG was already in talks with partners to sell stake in the block. Hindustan Oil Exploration Company (HOEC) holds 17.36 per cent stake and Tata Petrodyne and state-run Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) 10 per cent each. BG had invested close to $20 million in the Cambay Block, but was now abandoning the operations for want of significant discoveries, BG India official said but declined to elaborate on the kind of hydrocarbon discovery that was made.

While BG had encountered hydrocarbons in the first well it drilled in April-May, the third well last month reached 2000 meters but did not give satisfactory results, sources said.