Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN)– The government has allowed Scottish Cairn Energy and its partners to sell gas to a third party other than Petrobangla from any newly discovered gas fields in the offshore areas near Kutubdia under Block-16.

Under the amendment, Cairn, the operator of offshore Magnama and Hatiya structures, will negotiate with buyers besides Petrobangla to sell gas, a company official confirmed.

He also said Cairn and its partners would now be able to sell their gas to third parties under the PSC, but the gas will have to be sold within the country.

Deputy Secretary of the energy ministry AK Mohiuddin Ahmed signed the deal with Cairn Managing Director Phil Dolan and representatives of Cairn’s Block-16 partners Santos and Haliburton.

Cairn had discovered and developed the small offshore Sangu gas field in 1996 and has had hard luck finding any commercially viable gas field ever since.

It has however found a small prospect in Magnama, situated near the Kutubdia island in the Bay of Bengal. The company last year conducted a three-dimensional seismic survey in Magnama at an investment of $18 million and is now studying the results.

BBN/SI/AD-27Sept10-1:05 am (BST)