OIL awarded license to explore petroleum resources in Arunachal

ITANAGAR, Dec 18: Oil India Limited (OIL) has been awarded petroleum exploration license (PEL) for exploration of petroleum resources in seven new blocks in Arunachal Pradesh. License is also granted for a block as extension to the existing Jairampur block.
The exploration blocks spread across Changlang, Tirap, Lohit, East Siang, West Siang and Lower Dibang Valley districts.
Chief Minister Pema Khandu handed over the licenses to OIL Chief General Manager (FB) Inderjit Baruah and his team here on Wednesday morning.
Khandu urged OIL to keep in loop with the local administration during exploration so that people in the vicinity can be intimated in advance besides putting in place precautionary measures.
“The PSU may adopt public utility facilities like roads, which are exclusively used by the company.
This would facilitate better cooperation and support from the local populace,” the CM said. He also urged for providing services to the locals through the PSU’s CSR activities.
“A part of the royalties received through such projects should be utilized on development and welfare of the local people in the vicinity,” he said and asked Chief Secretary Naresh Kumar to ensure this by putting in a place a robust mechanism.
“The local people of the districts, where such projects are developed should get first preference on the benefits from the project,” Khandu said.
The OIL officials in a meeting with the chief minister in September had urged the state government for early issuance of forest clearances for the identified blocks so that environment clearance can be obtained from the central ministry to begin survey and exploration.
The OIL CGM thanked the chief minister for fast-tracking and completing the process within a short span of time enabling OIL to start its explorations from this month.
“The grant of licenses for the aforementioned blocks would lead to significant increase in exploration and production activities in oil sector in Arunachal.”
The central government had offered 55 exploration blocks spread across offshore and onshore areas under the Hydrocarbon Exploration and Licensing Policy (HELP) and Open Acreage Licensing Policy (OALP) Bid Round-1.
The directorate general of hydrocarbon, ministry of petroleum and natural gas conducted bidding of exploration blocks under OALP Bid Round-1 from 19 January to 2 May, 2018.
Under this bidding process, OIL bagged nine blocks, seven of which fall in Arunachal. In addition, the ministry also granted the Jairampur extension PEL Block measuring 23.25 sqkm, falling under Changlang district to OIL on nomination basis.
Later, the OIL officials informed the chief minister that exploration of each block consists of two phases–initial exploration and subsequent exploration. The exploration period of each phase is about three years with a provision for additional one year extension. The total exploration period is for 8 years.
The OIL officials also informed him that the detailed project report for the proposed pipeline from Kumchai (Kharsang) in Arunachal to OIL’s Duliajan FGS in Assam for transportation of natural gas is complete and submitted to the state government.
The proposed cross-country pipeline would cover a distance of 60 km of which 18.85 km will be within Arunachal territory. Once it starts functioning, the natural gas, which at the moment is burnt off without much utilization, can be put to commercial use earning revenue for the state government. (CMO)