On November 28, 2017, the Board of Directors of the National Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels ("ANP") approved the process of permanent offer of areas, with the purpose of allowing the offer once again of relinquished fields (or fields in the process of being relinquished) and exploratory blocks that have not been awarded during past bid rounds (or relinquished) through a differentiated system.
The guidelines for the permanent offer of areas were established in Article 4 of CNPE Resolution No. 17, dated June 2017, in which the National Energy Policy Council (“CNPE”) authorized the ANP to offer non-awarded or relinquished areas in past bid rounds, with the exception of fields or blocks in the pre-salt area or other strategic areas.
The differentiating factor of this initiative is that the industry itself, through companies of different sizes, will be able to participate in the assessment and selection process of the areas to be offered in the next bid rounds.
In this way, in order to allow for the assessment by the industry, the ANP last week made available on its website a set of 846 exploratory blocks from 13 Brazilian sedimentary basins (the onshore basins of Acre, Amazonas, Espírito Santo, Paraná, Parnaíba, Potiguar, Recôncavo, São Francisco, Sergipe-Alagoas and Tucano; and the offshore basins of Campos, Pará-Maranhão, Santos and Sergipe-Alagoas).
In addition, the ANP announced 15 areas with marginal accumulations in the onshore basins of Espírito Santo, Potiguar and Recôncavo, with the aim of increasing the knowledge of these areas and offering opportunities to small and medium-sized companies.
It should be noted that the areas selected by the ANP are still subject to the assessment of the relevant environmental agencies.
According to the schedule below, the rules for participation and the technical and economic parameters of the offered areas will be published by the end of April 2018, and the bidding session should take place from November 2018.
|Announcement of blocks and areas with marginal accumulations.||November 30, 2017.|
|Appraisal of areas and blocks by the interested companies.||From November 30, 2017.|
|Announcement of the rules for the implementation and participation in the permanent offer.||Until April 30, 2018.|
|Announcement of the technical and economic parameters of the areas and blocks.||Until April 30, 2018.|
|Beginning of registrations and binding expressions of interest||From May 2, 2018.|
|Bidding session||From November 1, 2018.|
For a long period of time, Tauil & Chequer Advogados in Association with Mayer Brown was engaged in discussions related to this matter. It is our understanding that the process of permanent offer of areas will allow a deeper interaction between the industry and the regulatory agency, which may ultimately guarantee the success of future bid rounds.