New Delhi: India has postponed until November its next auction of oil and gas blocks due to a shortage of rigs and a dispute over gas pricing, the country’s upstream regulator said on Friday.
It had planned to auction about 80 blocks this month.
“It has been deferred to November,” V.K. Sibal, head of the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons, told Reuters.
Demand for rigs, drilling equipment and services has risen due to a surge in global oil prices. The situation is expected to ease in 2009 with the commissioning of new rigs.
Sibal said blocks would be awarded by June 2008.
Reliance Industries is currently negotiating with government officials a price formula for the sale of gas from a block awarded under a previous auction.
The formula will apply to all future gas producers, and is therefore eagerly awaited by potential bidders.