Dec 11, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lanka is ready to calls for bids for oil exploration in more blocks in the island’s north-west as well as the south, Petroleum Resources Minister A H M Fowzie said. Fowzie said oil and gas discoveries on the Indian side of the Mannar Basin meant there was a better chance of finding similar deposits on the Sri Lankan side.
Fowzie said he was disappointed that neither India nor China which had been offered a block each in the Gulf of Mannar free of charge had shown interest in exploration.
The Indian government was offered block number one and China block number eight in the Gulf of Mannar.
“India wanted block number two which was given on tender to Cairn which we refused. Now there’s a possibility of Cairn India talking to the Indian government and starting exploration in block number one as well.
Fowzie also said his ministry has sought Cabinet approval to call for oil exploration bids in the island’s south where he said studies had shown hydrocarbon potential.
“Studies done in the southern province have shown indications of deposits of hydro carbon. I have submitted a Cabinet paper for approval to call for bids.” He said he expects more int