SINGAPORE, Feb. 28�Brunei said 28 companies are interested in production-sharing contracts in its deepwater regions.
The country expects to award production-sharing contracts early in 2002, with bids closing by November this year.
To jump-start the new round of exploration, the sultanate signed a contract with seismic survey company Petroleum Geo-Services ASA to shoot 3D seismic data.
"The 3D data is a significant risk reducer," Kim Morrison, head of regional geology at the Brunei-Based Fletcher Challenge Energy Borneo, said in Singapore at the Sixth Asia Natural Gas Markets conference.
Key prospects would be delineated by the time companies submitted their bids, he noted.
The blocks are in 1,000-2,750 m of water and seem to be related to Malaysian geology where gas discoveries have been made, said Morrison.
The first well in the new acreage would be drilled by late 2002 or early 2003, he predicted.