A Indian Government panel, known as the ‘Cabinet Committee on Investment’, which included India’s Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh, has conditionally cleared 5 new blocks for oil and gas exploration, whilst rejecting 3 others. The 3 blocks that failed to be approved were rejected on the basis of “national security considerations.”
A statement released by the panel claimed that almost US$ 11 billion had been invested into the five blocks in recent years and that a further US$ 600 million was expected over the coming years.
Earlier this year, the panel had attempted to approve 39 offshore blocks that had been put up for auction, but were held up by delays in obtaining clearance from the country’s ministry of defence. The defence ministry ultimately explained that clearance had been denied due to the presence of naval exercises and bases, and other military activities in the blocks.
Despite judgements being made on 8 of the proposed blocks, no details have been released as to when the remaining 31 will be discussed by the panel.
Edited from various sources by David Bizley
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