In the face of dwindling oil revenue, the Federal Government has directed oil companies operating in Nigeria to renew expired Oil Mining Leases (OML).
The statement also added that 45 marginal oil fields would be offered in a competitive bid round before the end of May 2017.
The Hon Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu made this known recently in Houston, Texas while having interaction with some journalists about the just concluded Offshore Technology Conference.
He added that the government had officially written to holders of all expired OMLs to come forward and update their licenses.
The OML issued by the Nigerian government to oil producers is one the most important documents they must possess and it hnas a validity period that ranges between five and 20 years.
According to the Minister “We have already sent out letters on those for existing OMLs but in terms of issuing new blocks we are probably not contemplating that for the rest of this year. But marginal fields we will deal with by end of May we should have all the data that we need.”
“We have identified about 40 to 45 marginal fields, we hope to increase those, and we will go forward to a bidding process.
It should be noted that that there are 109 OMLs that are in operation either under the Joint Venture (JV), Sole Risk (SR) or Production Sharing Contract (PSC) basis by oil companies in the country.