Congo sets new due dates for bids on Eastern oil blocks

Michael J. Kavanagh, Bloomberg May 09, 2023

(Bloomberg) – Democratic Republic of Congo’s oil ministry announced new due dates for bids on four oil blocks in its eastern region.

Submissions for the blocks are now due between October and December, the ministry said in a post on Twitter Monday. The deadlines were previously late May and early June.

The four eastern blocks up for tender include two on Lake Albert that adjoin blocks in Uganda owned by TotalEnergies SE and China National Offshore Oil Corp. Another block overlaps Virunga National Park, a home for endangered gorillas that was the subject of a 2014 Netflix film nominated for an Academy Award.

Congo’s oil ministry is hosting a roadshow in London on May 11 to promote the tender, after which it’s scheduled to announce new submission deadlines for twenty other blocks.

It’s the first time the central African nation has offered blocks under the framework of a revised 2015 oil law, which has slowed the process, Oil Minister Didier Budimbu Ntubuanga told Bloomberg in March.

The four landlocked blocks will need a pipeline to transport oil, and Budimbu is in talks with Uganda and Tanzania to join the planned East African Crude Oil Pipeline, he said.

New deadlines:

Block 1: Oct. 30

Block 2: Nov. 13

Block 4: Nov. 27

Block 5: Dec. 11

The oil ministry will announce the bidders three days after submissions are due, according to the ministry posting.

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