Mumbai: Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) and partner BP India have put up their oil and gas block at Gujarat’s Cambay basin for sale, two people aware of the development said.

RIL is the operator of the CB-ONN-2003/1 block (also called CB-10 block) with a 70% participating interest while BP holds the rest.

Reliance won the block in an auction in New Exploration and Licensing Policy (NELP).

RIL did not reply to an email sent on 28 March. BP India declined to comment.

“We had seen the block’s data but are yet to take a call if we would bid for RIL and BP’s block," an official from state-run Oil and Natural Gas Corp. Ltd, the first of the two people cited above said on condition of anonymity.

The block covers 635 sq. km and is divided into two parts, A and B.

In 2011, RIL had announced a “transformational" deal with UK-based BP Plc, which picked up 30% stake in its 21 oil and gas blocks. However, since 2012, both companies have been pruning their portfolio, relinquishing unviable blocks.

RIL now holds only four blocks—KG-D6 block in the Krishna Godavari basin; Mahanadi basin blocks NEC-25 and GS-01 in Saurashtra basin; and Panna-Mukta-Tapti oil and gas fields in the Arabian Sea.

“Crude oil prices are again on the rise and it may be difficult for RIL to find a buyer for the field now. Though we assessed the block’s data, we are not participating in the sale bids," the exploration director from an exploration and production company, the second person cited above, said on condition of anonymity.

RIL has also sold all its 16 overseas conventional oil and gas exploration blocks, that it acquired over the last few years.

In its international portfolio, RIL now holds two shale gas assets in the US. In October 2017, RIL agreed to sell the first of its shale gas ventures—upstream Marcellus shale gas assets in North-Eastern and central Pennsylvania in the US—for $126 million.

Between 2010 and 2013, RIL bought stakes in three upstream oil exploration joint ventures with Chevron, Pioneer Natural Resource, and Carrizo Oil and Gas; and a midstream joint venture with Pioneer. Midstream refers to the processing, storing, transporting and marketing of hydrocarbons.

Last week, RIL through its subsidiaries Reliance Eagleford Upstream Holding LP and Reliance Holding USA, agreed to sell part of its interest in Eagle Ford shale assets to Sundance Energy Inc. for $100 million.

“With an investment of Rs40,000 crore in KG block lined up, RIL and BP have decided to focus on their KG basin block," said an analyst tracking RIL.

He spoke on condition of anonymity as he is not allowed to speak to the media.

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