Zambia Invites Second Round of Oil Exploration Bids

Source: Reuters 12/26/2009, Location: Africa

Zambia on Saturday invited a second round of bids from foreign and local companies to explore for oil in six of the southern African country's nine provinces. The ministry of mines and minerals development said in a statement the government was looking for companies to explore in 23 demarcated blocks in the North-Western, Western, Southern, Eastern, Northern and Luapula provinces.

"The bidder must be able to demonstrate a proven ability to raise the necessary funds, assets, machinery, equipment, tolls and technical expertise to explore for petroleum in an environmentally friendly manner," it said, adding bidding would close at the end of June 2010.

Zambia last month selected seven of eight foreign and local firms that submitted bids to explore for oil in the first round of bidding in three provinces.

Britain's GP Petroleum and Petrodel Resources, Glint Energy of the United States and Exile Resources of Canada were chosen along with Zambian firms Majetu, Barotse Petroleum Company and Chat Milling Company Ltd.

Zambia, which relies on copper mining for most of its foreign exchange earnings, does not produce oil, but the government says soil samples sent to European laboratories have shown good traces of oil, particularly in areas bordering oil-producing Angola.


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