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Myanmar offshore bidding round draws attention

Companies are bidding for rights in the lightly explored area

A landmark offshore bidding round in Myanmar (Burma) has drawn dozens of companies jostling for exploration rights, particularly in its deep-water play. More than 40 companies, including Shell, Chevron, ExxonMobil, Total and Petronas, were keen to land acreage, due in part to indications that Myanmar’s offshore could be rich in gas, with ready markets in neighbouring Asian countries. The nation, which sits between energy-hungry India and China, is only lightly explored as nationalistic policies largely locked foreign companies out from the 1960s until the early 1990s. Years of sanctions against its military dictatorship further stymied investment. But since sanctions were relaxed in 2011, th

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