ELPE to be awarded Arta-Preveza block, sources inform

The Enviroment and Energy Ministry is expected to announce the results of a tender for exploration and exploitation licenses at three onshore blocks in western Greece within the next few days.

According to sources, the Arta-Preveza block, which had drawn offers from both ELPE (Hellenic Petroleum) and Energean Oil & Gas, will be awarded to ELPE, while the Etoloakarnania block will be granted to Energean Oil & Gas, the sole bidder for this block, and the northwestern Peloponnese block will go to ELPE (Hellenic Petroleum), also the only bidder.

The energy minister Panos Skourletis had encouraged ELPE and Energean to work out a deal and join forces for the Arta-Preveza block. However, following a series of meetings, talks between ELPE and Energean Oil & Gas failed to produce results and were disrupted.

Energean had proposed a joint venture between the two companies for the Arta-Preveza block from the start. However, ELPE officials had noted the company would be willing to collaborate only if declared the winning bidder.

Also, both sides had insisted on assuming the operator’s role in any prospective partnership for the Arta-Preveza license. Energean Oil & Gas officials believed their company was more appropriate for the role as it possesses the required knowhow.

The tender’s results, to be announced over the coming days, are expected to ignite complaints and appeals. Throughout the tender’s procedure, Energean Oil & Gas did not refrain from claiming ELPE failed to meet standard requirements for participation in the tender. Energean Oil & Gas had forwarded a letter of protest to the committee overseeing the procedure.