Govt nods splitting of Assam-Nagaland gas & oil block

Govt nods splitting of Assam-Nagaland gas & oil block

New Delhi: The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on Thursday approved splitting of an oil and gas block falling in Assam and Nagaland into two so that exploration that could not be completed previously in Nagaland can now be taken up.

A meeting of the CCEA, chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, approved “splitting of the Production Sharing Contract (PSC) for Block AA-ON/7 in two parts, to consider separate exploration period of Nagaland part of the block," an official statement said.

The 1,934 sq km block was awarded to Canoro Resources Ltd in late 1990s. About 1,126 sq km area of the block was in Assam and the remaining 808 sq km in Nagaland. Petroleum Exploration Licence (PEL) for Assam portion of the block was granted on 27 March 2001 and for Nagaland portion was granted by the state government on 8 August 2006.

The statement said though the exploration was completed in Assam portion of the block, no work could be carried out in Nagaland before the expiry of seven-year exploration phase on 26 March 2008.

“The main objective of the approval is to enable carrying out an additional exploration work programme in Nagaland portion of the block by signing of separate PSC for Nagaland portion at terms and conditions not inferior to existing terms and conditions in the present PSC," it said.