"OVL has submitted a binding bid for an offer made by Exxon Mobil to participate in the sale process of its 25 per cent stake in Block 31 in Angola," Jitin Prasada, minister of state for petroleum and natural gas told the Lok Sabha on Thursday.
Prasada neither provided valuation of the deal nor the timeframe within which Exxon Mobil will decide on OVL's bid.
British energy firm BP Plc is the operator of the ultradeep sea block with 26.7 per cent stake.
"In case the bid by OVL is successful, it would entitle OVL to a share of production, as per its stake, from the production of oil expected to commence during 2012,"
Block 31 is expected to produce 150,000 barrels of crude oil per day (7.5 million tonnes a year). In all, 19 oil discoveries have so far been made in the block.
Sonangol is the concessionaire of Block 31. BP Exploration (Angola) Ltd as operator holds 26.67 per cent.
The other interest owners in Block 31 are Sonangol P&P (20 per cent), Statoil Angola A S, a subsidiary of StatoilHydro ASA, (13.33 per cent), Marathon International Petroleum Angola Block 31 Ltd (10 per cent) and TEPA (BLOCK 31) Ltd, a subsidiary of the Total Group (5 per cent).