52 firms vie for Lebanon oil and gas

AN oil storage facility in Beirut, Lebanon, Thursday, Jan. 5, 2012. (The Daily Star/Hasan Shaaban)

BEIRUT: Fifty-two international oil firms have submitted applications to the Petroleum Administration Committee, the Energy Minister said Thursday, as the deadline for submission of the pre-qualification round expired.

The 52 companies, registered in 25 countries, include 14 operators and 38 non-operators, Energy Minister Gebran Bassil said.

International companies that applied include Royal Dutch Shell, Chevron, ExxonMobil, Dana Gas, Petrogas and many others.

One Lebanese company, Consolidated Contractors Energy, was named as an applicant.

Bassil added that over 200 companies had withdrawn applications documents but stopped short of applying.

This, Bassil said, demonstrated that Lebanon had set very tough conditions for the first licensing round; the minister explained.

“Lebanon’s conditions were much tougher than in neighboring countries but the interest of oil and a gas company was higher,” he said.

He said this signals international confidence in Lebanon, its transparent management of the oil and gas sector and highly promising hydrocarbon resources on the country’s off-shore.

Thirty different firms from 20 countries had purchased seismic data of the potential reserves off the country’s coast for nearly $110 million, netting Lebanon over $34 million in revenues.





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