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ISLAMABAD: The Balochistan Assembly has notified a 10-member technical committee to take up the award of six exploration blocks awarded to state-run oil and gas companies with the federal government and submission of report to the provincial assembly.

The Provincial Assembly of Balochistan had set up a special technical committee to find out details of petroleum exploration blocks awarded to state-run oil and gas companies without taking the province into confidence.

Abdul Quddus Bezinjo, speaker provincial assembly will chair the committee to discuss the matter with the federal government.

While the Petroleum Division says that the formation of committee by the Provincial Assembly of Balochistan on recent bidding round of 20 oil and gas blocks, on a request of the lawmaker.

This Division vehemently repudiates the false assumptions narrated by the esteemed provincial lawmaker on process of awarding oil and gas blocks for exploration to the SOEs.

The Division awarded 20 oil and gas blocks through competitive bidding process, in accordance with the Petroleum Exploration and Production Policy 2012 (Policy), which is approved by the Council of Common Interest.

Director General (Petroleum Concessions) DGPC also invited the exploration companies through a comprehensive advertisement published in leading national newspapers, international newspapers as well as on the Division's website.

The bids received by the last date i.e. 15 January, 2021 were opened publicly on the same day at 10:30 hours by the “Bid Opening Committee” including provincial director for Balochistan.

The Balochistan National Party (BNP-Mengal) lawmaker, Sana Baloch, while speaking on a calling-attention notice in the provincial assembly had pointed out that the federal government had allocated six blocks to the companies for exploration of mineral resources in the provinces, including Balochistan, without taking the provinces into confidence, which was a violation of the Constitution.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021