Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. (ADNOC) awarded Japan’s Inpex Corp. an onshore exploration concession in Abu Dhabi's competitive block bid round, ADNOC said in a statement on March 17.

Inpex will hold a 100% stake in the exploration phase, while ADNOC has the option to hold a 60% stake in the production phase of the concession, the statement said.

The 35-year concession is for Onshore Block 4, and Inpex will invest up to 646 million UAE dirhams (US$176 million) in the block, ADNOC said.

A wholly-owned INPEX subsidiary, JODCO Exploration Limited, will hold and manage the interest in the concession on behalf of INPEX.

The block covers an onshore area of 6,116 square kilometers, ADNOC said, and it holds two existing undeveloped oil and gas fields, Ramhan and Hudairat.

The award is the latest of blocks offered in April 2018 in Abu Dhabi's first ever competitive exploration and licensing round.

In January, ADNOC awarded the Offshore 1 and Offshore 2 exploration blocks to a consortium led by Italian oil major Eni and Thailand's PTTEP.

In February, it awarded Occidental Petroleum onshore Block 3.