Oil and Gas Block Offer 2015 announced

  • Simon Bridges
Energy and Resources

Energy and Resources Minister Simon Bridges has launched Block Offer 2015, the annual tender for oil and gas exploration permits.

“In 2012 the Government introduced the Block Offer regime which provides an efficient and transparent process for oil and gas permitting, and each year has attracted investment from experienced and capable operators.

“Block Offer 2015 includes three onshore release areas: one in the Taranaki Basin and two in the West Coast Basin.  There are four offshore release areas, in the Reinga-Northland Basin, Taranaki Basin, Pegasus Basin, and Great South-Canterbury Basin,” Mr Bridges says.

The total acreage included in the tender is 429,298 square kilometres.  This includes 4,093 square kilometres onshore and 425,205 square kilometres offshore. 

“New Zealand has built a strong, world-class regulatory framework to provide for economic opportunities, while also ensuring the necessary environmental and safety protections.  The process for awarding permits is rigorous.

“Oil is our fourth largest export, and brings in around $700 million each year in royalties and taxes.  This money is invested back into our communities in key infrastructure projects like roads, schools and hospitals.

“It is clear that companies are seeking frontier acreage and long-term opportunities like those which New Zealand has to offer, and this Government remains committed to attracting major international companies to invest in exploration and development in this country,” he says.

The tender announcement follows consultation with iwi and local authorities.  The tender will close on 30 September 2015.  Permits for Block Offer 2015 will likely be granted in December 2015.

More information on the release areas and the Block Offer process is available at http://www.nzpam.govt.nz/cms/about-nzpam/news/current-news/block-offer-2015-release-areas-announced