The highlight of this round of auction was the interest shown by Dilip Shanghvi of Sun Pharma through Sun Petrochemicals and Subhash Chandra’s Essel Group through Essel Group Middle East. “The response that we got is really exciting. We are going to evaluate the bids within the next 20 days and will come out with the list of shortlisted companies,” said an official from the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH), an arm of the petroleum and natural gas ministry that is conducting the bidding process.
The list of new firms also includes Gem Laboratories, Quippo, Oilmax Energy, Megha Engineering, Ramayana Ispat, Duggar Fiber, Nippon Power, Invenire Energy, Akhil Teja Natural Resources, Gopalka Savings, BDN Enterprises, Mahindra Infrastructure and Worldwide Oilfield. Moreover, the current round also saw the participation of 37 private sector companies
of the total 42 in a race. However, the auctions failed to attract many interests from overseas companies, despite the government having roadshows in the US, the UK, Singapore and West Asia. Only five foreign companies participated in the current round. Even offshore areas also did not gather enough interest from bidders. While all the 26 on land contract area received e-bids, 8 of 20 offshore contract areas have received e-bids.Of the total 134 e-bids received, 120 e-bids were for on land areas and 14 e-bids were for offshore areas.