South Africa will relax a moratorium on gas and oil exploration licenses implemented earlier this year to allow E&P applications already in the system to be granted, a government minister said Nov. 29.
“This amendment will ensure that applications currently in our system are processed and granted,” Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe told an oil and gas industry meeting.
In June, Mantashe published a notice in the government gazette announcing a restriction on the granting of technical cooperation permits, exploration rights and production rights.
“We can’t delay exploration because we want to accelerate investment,” he said.
Investment in the industry stalled due to regulatory uncertainty and lower crude prices. Companies with offshore acreage and exploration ambitions in South Africa include Total, Eni, Sasol and ExxonMobil.
The company said June 9 the Longtail-3 well encountered 230 ft of net pay, but Koebi-1 was deemed non-commercial.
Interested companies can present bids starting June 4, with results expected July 16, the head of the national hydrocarbons agency told journalists.
The Colombian government expects investment of about $600 million to explore the 18 onshore oil and gas blocks and two offshore blocks that will begin to be awarded in June.