Mexico rolls out another upstream tender

OREANDA-NEWS. August 24, 2016. Mexico unveiled its latest package of blocks to be awarded in an April 2017 tender, maintaining a steady pace of upstream offers that it hopes will lead to a rebound in crude production.

The 12 onshore blocks cover a total of 5,066km2, and hold an estimated 643.2mn bl of oil equivalent (boe) in proven, probable and prospective (3P) reserves.

Three of the blocks are located in the Southeast basin, while the other nine lie in the Burgos basin.

The new tender is the second in Mexico's Round Two.

Round One will culminate with a high-profile deepwater tender to be awarded in December.

The energy secretary said today it had come to an agreement with the finance secretary and Mexico's oil regulator CNH on license contract terms and bidding requirements for the latest tender, but full technical, financial and safety requirements will be published tomorrow.

A previous onshore tender for 25 blocks held last year was the most successful under the country's staggered bidding rounds that kicked off in 2015 following a historic energy reform approved the previous year.

The latest onshore auction offers licenses, rather than the more complex production-sharing contract model offered in most of the previous tenders.

The new licenses will cover a 30-year period rather than a previous 25 years, and will include two possible five-year extensions.

The contracts have an initial two-year exploration phase, extendable by two years, a one-year evaluation period and a 24-34 year development period.

Local content requirements were set at 26-38pc, depending on the phase of the project.

Interested participants will be able to bid for a maximum of four contracts, with no restriction for large oil companies to bid together, as was the case in previous auctions.

Firms can access geological data on the areas until 5 December. The pre-qualification process will end in March 2017.