Austrian oil and gas group OMV said it was spending $20 million on an exploration survey in Egypt in the coming weeks.

OMV was awarded an offshore exploration block in the Mediterranean Sea near Matruh in the 2006 Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS) licensing round.

“We have already committed ourselves to the 3D seismic survey, and that is close to $20 million. We’re investing that until 1 July,” OMV managing director Hussein Hussein said.

“We might see results by the end of this year,” he added.

Hussein said in a Reuters report the company hadn’t been interested in the most recent bid round launched by EGAS in September 2008 and was more interested in the onshore blocks expected in an upcoming Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) licensing round coming up soon.

“We weren’t really interested in the Nile Delta and more interested in the Western Desert,” Hussein said.

“We are waiting for the EGPC round because it will be onshore,” he said.

(Upstream Online)