Nigeria: After 15 Years, Federal Govt Opens Fresh Bid Round, Offers 7 Offshore Oil Blocks

The federal government has put seven deep offshore oil blocks on offer, calling on investors globally to bid for them.

This is the first time in 15 years that the federal government is putting fresh oil blocks up for bids.

The Commission chief executive, Nigeria Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission, (NUPRC), Engr. Gbenga Komolafe, who announced this yesterday in Abuja, said the seven offshore blocks covering an area of approximately 6,700 km2 in water depths of 1,150m to 3,100m is put on offer in the Mini Bid Round 2022.

Engr. Komolafe said, this is the first time a bid for a deep offshore asset is holding after the Petroleum Industry Act, PIA 2021 and since April 2007 when 45 blocks were offered but under the defunct regulation.

The CCE further said a pre-bid conference will hold on January 16, 2023, and prospective investors are expected to submit bids for the blocks on or before January 31, 2023.

Komolafe stated that the Mini Bid Round is the first in a series of bid rounds, aimed at further development of this prospective petroleum basin will be held in accordance with the Petroleum Industry Act 2021 (PIA), with its enhanced legal and regulatory frameworks that seek to encourage new investors and investments into the next phase of exploration in this region.

According to him, the Mini Bid Round will be managed by the NUPRC, in line with the provisions of the PIA, as the statutory body responsible for ensuring compliance with petroleum laws, regulations, and guidelines in the Nigerian upstream petroleum industry.

“The National Data Repository (NDR) of NUPRC and our multi-client partners are delighted and ready to support the Mini Bid Round underpinned by high-quality datasets.

“The blocks have extensive 2D and 3D seismic data coverage, including multi-beam and analogue data. Additionally, a remarkable quality, 3D MegaSurveyPlus reprocessed Pre-stack Time Migration (completed October 2022), with angle stacks and gathers is also available to prospective bidders. Links to all data can be accessed via the dedicated NUPRC portal.

“The Mini Bid Round is a market-driven programme and will follow a transparent and competitive procurement process designed to attract competent third-party investors from across the world that have the capability and proficiency in operating in the deep-water environments.

“Historically, this Mini Bid Round intends to build on the successes of the last bid round that held in April 2007 during which a total of forty-five (45) blocks, drawn from the inland Basins of Anambra, Benue and Chad; the Niger Delta Continental Shelf; Onshore Niger Delta and Deep Offshore were put on offer.

“The 2007 bid round was held under a different regulatory regime (the Petroleum Act, 1969) and generated massive interest and participation with its attended revenue which made the exercise a success.

“In this year’s mini bid round, seven Offshore blocks covering an area of approximately 6,700 km2 in water depths of 1,150m to 3,100m is put on offer.

“The success of the Mini Bid Round will ensure all stakeholders gain value from the country’s resources, whilst paying close attention to the reduction in carbon emissions, as well as overall environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations.

“A dedicated programme portal ( for the Mini Bid Round has been published by NUPRC, which provides details of the bid round process, including the registration and prequalification requirements, and detailed guidelines for applicants.

“A pre-bid conference is scheduled for 16th Jan 2023, to provide potential applicants with an opportunity to ask questions they may have concerning the Mini Bid Round process and requirements, after which interested companies will be invited to submit their pre-qualification applications by 31st Jan 2023.

“NUPRC will continue to provide further details and roadmap for this international competitive mini bid Round in due course.

“It is a great privilege to announce the Mini Bid Round 2022 and we look forward to the success of the upcoming events and activities,” he said.


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