The Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) has released rules governing the operation of the 2023 mini-bid round and while it follows the conventional pattern, it adds new procedures.
In a recent pre-bid conference organised in Lagos, the NUPRC invited potential investors, key players, and stakeholders in the Nigerian oil and gas industry to provide an overview and guidelines for the 2022/2023 mini-bid round.
The mini-bid round is the first to be held under the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) 2021. A bid round was held for marginal oil fields in 2020/2021.
According to the NUPRC, seven deep offshore blocks (PPL- 300- DO, PPL- 301- DO, PPL- 302- DO, PPL- 303- DO, PPL- 304 -DO, PPL- 305- DO and PPL -306 –DO) are targeted by the bid round.
The NUPRC said the bidding round will start with registration and pre-qualification. Prospective bidders are expected to register, pay $5,000 and $20,000 as registration and application and processing fee respectively, and submit documents for pre-qualification.
Pre-qualified applicants are mandated to purchase data from accredited vendors and upload evidence of data purchased prior to submitting a technical bid and presentation.
Technical bid submission/presentation
According to the commission, prospective bidders will apply and submit bid applications (per block). “Bidders may be invited for a technical presentation.”
Technical bid evaluation
The technical evaluation follows the technical bid submission. It is carried out on all submitted bid applications, and bidders are notified of the outcome of their bid applications.
Commercial bid conference
This is the final part of the bid round process; only successful bidders are invited to participate in the commercial bid conference.
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However, there are requirements a prospective bidder is supposed to meet to be eligible to bid. According to the commission, an applicant may bid as an individual company or as a member of a consortium.
“An applicant must be a company incorporated under the Companies and Allied Matters Act or a statutory corporation established under Nigerian law,” the commission said in a statement.
It said foreign companies may submit an application, and can provide the incorporation or registration number and specify the relevant jurisdiction of incorporation or registration in the application.
“However, a foreign company that is successful and qualifies for an award will be required to incorporate a subsidiary in Nigeria to be eligible for the award,” it said. “In a consortium, all members must satisfy the legal and financial requirements prescribed in the Petroleum Licensing Round Regulations 2022 and at least one member designated as the operator must satisfy all criteria.”