At least 25 local and foreign petroleum exploration companies have firmed up their interest in acquiring the 15 oil and gas blocks being offered by the Aquino administration under the Philippine Energy Contracting Round 4 with the submission of documents prequalifying them to the bidding.
Energy Undersecretary Jose Layug Jr. identified the major players as French multinational Total, one of the world’s leading oil and gas groups; Eni S.p.A., an Italian multinational oil and gas company that is present in 79 countries; American firm CalEnergy, an international leader in the development and production of energy from diversified fuel sources like geothermal, natural gas and hydroelectric; and GDF Suez of France, which is currently the No. 1 independent power producer in the world and the top importer of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and supplier of energy and environmental efficiency services in Europe.
The other companies that submitted prequalification documents, according to Layug, were Shell Philippines Exploration BV (SPEX), NorAsian Energy Ltd., Australian firm Nido Petroleum Corp., Malaysia’s Mitra Energy Ltd., Australian firm Tap Oil Ltd., Minergy Corp. Ltd., Pitkin Petroleum Plc. and Esso, a subsidiary of oil giant Exxon Mobil Corp.
Based on the initial list as of last Friday, the more notable local firms that submitted the requirements were PetroEnergy Resources Corp., PNOC Exploration Corp., Monte Oro Resources and Philex Petroleum, which is owned by businessman Manuel V. Pangilinan’s Philex Mining Corp.
Other companies that submitted their respective prequalification documents were Golden Dragon, Kris Energy, KRX Energy, Caranarvon Energy, Planet Gas, Forum Pacific, Southernpec Pte. Ltd., Mindanao Asia International Energy Corp. and Dilmoro Energy Corp.
Layug said they expected more companies to seek prequalification to the PECR 4 until the deadline of submission this Wednesday (February 29). Once these companies have been found to be qualified to join the bidding, they will be given between April and July this year to submit actual bid proposals for the areas of their choice.
In June last year, the Department of Energy launched the PECR 4 for petroleum, during which it offered 15 prospective oil and gas blocks in Cagayan, Central Luzon, Northwest Palawan, Mindoro-Cuyo, East Palawan, Cotabato and the Sulu Sea.