Shell, Chevron, and Petrobras Weigh Guyana Oil Auction Bids

The nation set to offer 14 offshore blocks in April.

The flag of Guyana pinned on the map. Horizontal orientation. Macro photography.
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Guyana’s upcoming offshore oil block auction, scheduled on 14 April, has lured at least 10 companies, including Shell, Petrobras, and Chevron, to consider another dip into one of the globe’s hottest oil regions, according to Reuters.

Guyana is set to offer 14 offshore blocks to help speed economic development and reduce an ExxonMobil-led consortium’s dominance of its oil sector. Winning bidders are expected to be picked next month.

Companies interested in the April round have paid for seismic data to evaluate the blocks and decide whether to submit offers, according to the government. They include six big international producers, Energy Minister Vickram Bharrat said without identifying the companies. Most of the companies participating are keeping their bid options open as they wait for the government to release firm contract terms.

Exxon, QatarEnergy, Shell, Chevron, and Petrobras are among the operators that have paid $20,000 for the geologic information available on the 11 shallow-water and three deepwater blocks, according to Reuters.

Guyana estimates it has up to 25 billion bbl of oil and gas in place off its coast. A consortium that includes ExxonMobil, Hess, and CNOOC operates the country’s most prolific area to date, the 6.6-million-acre Stabroek block, hosting more than 30 individual discoveries.

Guyana also has begun direct negotiations on the 14 blocks and other areas with governments that have state-controlled oil companies. Guyana also may reclaim up to 20% of Exxon’s biggest block and re-offer it in the future.