The government on Monday received 181 bids from global and domestic oil majors, including ONGC, Reliance Industries, Essar, BP Plc and BHP Billiton, for oil and gas exploration blocks under the seventh round of NELP auction.
However, there were no bids for 12 out of 57 blocks that were on the offer under the New Exploration Licensing Policy. The winners would be decided by August 31, 2008
ONGC is understood to have bid for the maximum number of blocks, while Essar Exploration and Production Ltd has bid for four shallow water blocks along with US-based Nobel Energy, in addition to one deep water block with GSPC.
Reliance Industries (RIL), which has a major presence in upstream operations particularly after the gigantic gas find in Krishna Godavari basin, is understood to have bid for an estimated half-a-dozen blocks.
The government had twice postponed the bid dates for the seventh round of auction under the New Exploration Licensing Policy, even as the Petroleum Ministry sought tax breaks from the Finance Ministry for oil and gas production.