Oil, gas tender for Ionian Sea, south of Crete announced

An international tender for exploration and exploitation rights at twenty offshore blocks in the Ionian Sea, western Greece, and south of Crete, was published today in the Official Journal of the European Union, giving interested companies the go-ahead to submit offers.

Potential participants face a ninety-day deadline to submit their bids, beginning today. Once this period has expired, a two-month evaluation period will follow. Then, pre-contractual procedures are scheduled to take a further three months, while finalized contracts are expected to be signed in autumn, 2015.

All bids will be evaluated in accordance with Greek law for sustained, comprehensive, effective and safe oil and natural gas exploration and exploitation, taking environmental factors into serious account, the announcement noted.

The Ministry of Environment, Energy & Climate Change will prepare lease contracts for each specific block, while bidders will be able to work collaboratively on specific blocks.

Criteria to be used in the evaluation of bids include applicant financial sustainability for exploration and exploitation, proven technical knowhow, quality of the bid, and environmental understanding.

Offers submitted to the Ministry of Environment, Energy & Climate Change following the deadline will not be taken into consideration, the announcement noted.