(Adds APEX statement)
CAIRO Dec 2 Egypt has accepted six bids for oil
and gas exploration worth a total investment of up to $200
million, the Ministry of Petroleum said on Friday.
In May, the General Authority for Petroleum announced an
international tender for 11 oil and natural gas blocks in the
Western Desert and Gulf of Suez as Egypt looks to boost oil and
gas production to meet growing energy demand.
Royal Dutch Shell, BP, Apache Corp
and Apex International Energy are among the companies involved,
the ministry said in a statement.
It said BP would invest at least $46 million, Apache at
least $60.6 million and Shell at least $35.5 million.
Apex said it had been awarded two blocks covering 6,714
square km in the Western Desert.
Apex is "committed to invest $27.4 million during the first
exploration phase to acquire and process 3D seismic and drill
six exploration wells," it said in a news release.
The Egyptian government has been on a drive to draw foreign
investors back to its energy sector in an effort to boost its
squeezed public finances.
Egypt owes about $3 billion to international oil companies
for oil and gas they have supplied.
(Reporting by Ehab Farouk; writing by Amina Ismail; editing by