02 Feb 16 – The government of the Maldives is in talks with two international oil and gas firms for a contract to prospect for oil and gas both onshore and offshore in its territories, Mohamed Shainee, Minister of Fisheries and Agriculture, told Mergermarket.
One of these firms is registered in Norway and the other in the UK. The deal will be finalized by March, Shainee said.
The terms of the deal are still under discussion. Both companies have proposed different methods of income. This could take the form of royalties, equity in any discoveries, and companies selling the data collected. The Government of the Maldives is looking for a formula by which it will not pay for the prospecting work, Shainee said.
The chosen company will likely embark on the prospecting work by mid-2016, Shainee said.
Once some data on the Maldives potential oil and gas reserves have been generated, the government will look to hire financial advisers to advise on a possible oil and gas licensing round, Shainee said. The government would like to hold a licensing round ‘as soon as possible’, Shainee added.
By Katie McQue