Croatia confirms offshore license recall. New round in September

Image: CHA (For illustration purposes)
Image: CHA (For illustration purposes)

Offshore Energy Today reported yesterday the consortium of oil companies had given up on their plans to explore for and exploit hydrocarbons in the Adriatic Sea, offshore Croatia. 

The two companies, Austria’s OMV and Houston-headquartered Marathon Oil, received a license to explore seven offshore blocks in January 2015 as part of Croatia’s first offshore licensing round.

After reports emerged that OMV and Marathon had backed down from their plans, Offshore Energy Today reached out to Croatian Hydrocarbon Agency (CHA) for confirmation and details of the cancellation.

Barbara Doric, CHA President of the Management Board, confirmed that the Consortium had withdrawn from their licenses.

When asked about the reasons behind this decision, Doric explained: “The reasoning behind withdrawal is related to potential border discrepancy with Montenegro. Croatia and Montenegro in 2002 adopted Protocol on the Interim Regime along the Southern Border and it is obligatory for all involved countries. Unfortunately, at this point this was not something which was satisfactory for the parties involved.”

Doric added that no matter the decision made by the consortium, “the project goes on as scheduled”. Furthermore, Doric emphasized that agreements with other selected bidders, both offshore and onshore, will be signed as planned.

To remind, one other offshore license awarded in January had gone to a consortium of Eni and Medoilgas and INA received a licence to explore in two offshore blocks.

The agency’s president concluded that due to high interest in Croatia’s offshore blocks, there will be a second licensing round in late September. Doric also added that the agency expects “great interest, especially for the area in the South Adriatic”.

Offshore Energy Today Staff

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