Baltic Sea oil exploration tender announced

  • 2002-05-23
  • Baltic News Service, RIGA
Latvia's Economy Ministry has announced a tender on the rights to acquire a license for oil exploration in Latvia's territorial waters of the Baltic Sea.

Applications for the tender will be accepted through Aug. 30.

TGS Nopec, a United States and Norwegian joint venture, last month acquired a license for oil exploration in a territory covering over 2,000 square kilometers in the Baltic Sea, while now the tender has been announced for the whole of Latvia's territorial waters, from the Lithuanian border to the Irbe Strait.

Being non-exclusive licenses, however, they do not grant the right to extract oil.

The license will be extended for a two-year term while the Economy Ministry will be able to extend the license term for a period which, together with the initial license term, does not exceed five years. The license charge is 2,000 lats ($3,225).

The main tender evaluation criteria will be technical abilities and the previous experience of the bidders, as well as the use of environmentally friendly technologies.

TGS Nopec was the only company that applied for the first oil exploration license tender before the set deadline of Oct. 31, 2001.

The Economy Ministry also has announced a repeat tender for oil exploration and extraction licenses in Latvian waters. Applications for that tender will be accepted through Oct. 18.

Until now, only one tender had been held for oil exploration and extraction. However, no bidders applied for it.