UAE emirate Ras al-Khaimah (RAK) launched its first petroleum licensing round on April 2 for exploration and development contracts in seven areas, Reuters reported.

The seven areas include four shallow water offshore blocks and three onshore blocks. “The blocks on offer include highly prospective exploration opportunities, an undeveloped oil discovery, and a mature gas condensate redevelopment opportunity,” the RAK government said.

The blocks have access to existing petroleum infrastructure including pipelines, and oil and gas-processing facilities.

Bids are expected to be received in November 2018, before a new exploration and production sharing agreement is awarded.

“All offshore blocks have recently been covered by a new multi-client broadband 3D seismic survey which is available for viewing. The petroleum rights will be governed by a modern, investor-friendly, Exploration and Production Sharing Agreement, making RAK a very attractive place to explore for, and produce oil and gas,” Nishant Dighe, CEO of national oil company RAK Gas, stated.

“RAK has significant remaining oil and gas potential within its diverse petroleum geology – in both the onshore and offshore acreage,” Dighe added.