Islamabad    -   After a delay of almost one year, the government has finally signed Petroleum Concession Agreements (PCAs) and Exploration Licences (ELs) for four out of ten oil and gas blocks.  A signing ceremony on the successful execution of Petroleum Concession Agreements (PCAs) and Exploration Licences (ELs) was held here Monday. It is worth to mention here that after gap of five years the present government last year November had finalized the bidding process for the award of 10 oil and gas exploration blocks in all the provinces. According the BID results SPEC had won the highest number of oil and gas exploration blocks with five out of 10 blocks, however the higher numbers of work unit won by Mari Petroleum Company Limited.  However now PCA and ELs was signed for four blocks only as Spec, the winner of highest number of blocks, was removed from the race.  The PCAs and ELs for four blocks were signed here  by Secretary Petroleum,  Mian Asad Hayauddin and DG (Petroleum Concession) Imran Ahmed on behalf of the Government of Pakistan and Dr. Naseem Ahmed, MD/CEO OGDCL, Moin Raza, MD/CEO PPL and Lt.Gen (Retired) Ishfaq Nadeem Ahmed, MD/CEO MPCL. The PCAs and ELs are located at Block No. 3269-1 (Wali West)- MPCL; Block No.3072-8, Block No.2972-6 (Shakar Ganj West-Cholistan) OGDCL and Block No. 3072-5 (Punjab) PPL.

Wali West block covers an area of 1609.63 Sq Kms and is spread over North Waziristan (64.71%) South Waziristan (27.73%), FR Tank (1.23%), FR Lakki Marwat (6.18%) and Bannu (0.16%). The Cholistan Block covers an area of 2478.26 Sq.Kms and is spread between the districts of Bahawalpur (19.22%), Bahawalnagar (80.78%), The Shakarganj West Block covers an area of 2479.37 Sq. Kms between the districts of Pakpattan (27.46%), Bahawalnagar (0.25%), Vehari (51.66%) and Sahiwal (20.63%). The Punjab Block, 2410.81 in Sq.Kms is primarily located in Pakpattan (42.78%), Sahiwal (41.58%), Okara (15.07%) and Bahawalnagar (0.57%) districts.

The minimum firm work commitment for these blocks has been worked out to US $ 44.1 million for a three year period. The companies are obligated to spend a mininum of $30,000/year in each block on socio-economic welfare activities. The annual contribution towards such schemes for these four blocks would,thus, stand at $120,000.

Speaking on the occasion, the Federal Minister of Energy for Petroleum Division, Omar Ayub Khan welcomed the execution of the Petroleum Concession Agreements and Exploration Licences and termed them an important step towards incremental investments in Pakistan's Energy sector that would lead to expanding the area of operations in far flung areas of the country; contribute to the socio economic uplift of these areas and hopefully increase sources of indigenous energy production in the country.