Trowers & Hamlins advises NPC of Jordan on major concession agreement for exploration and development of its gas resources

Published November 8th, 2009 - 03:19 GMT

Trowers & Hamlins, the City and International law firm, has acted as legal advisor to the National Petroleum Company (NPC) of Jordan in the negotiation and structuring of an agreement that will allow BP plc to explore and potentially develop gas resources in the Risha concession in northeast Jordan. The project agreement, which will be submitted to the Jordanian Parliament, was signed in Amman on October 25, 2009.


BP, which has substantial expertise in managing tight gas fields around the world, is seeking to bring its advanced technology and deep expertise to the Risha development.  The Risha field, which consists of a complex “tight gas” geological structure, produces approximately 20 million cubic feet a day of gas at current output.  BP has significant expertise in managing tight gas fields around the world, in North America, North Africa and the Middle East.  It is hoped that if BP’s exploration program identifies commercially producible gas reserves, production could reach several hundred million cubic feet per day.


Trowers and Hamlins provided legal advice to the NPC to develop a project agreement that enabled BP to successfully conclude a farm into the Risha project, whilst maintaining the integrity of NPC’s existing concession.


Martin Amison, Partner and Head of International for Trowers & Hamlins, said:  “We have been working in Jordan for many years and are delighted to have worked on this very significant project, which is key to Jordan's Energy Master Plan.”


We are particularly pleased to have acted as legal advisor to NPC on these agreements as they have the potential to make an enormous contribution to Jordan's continuing economic development by tapping into a previously unexploited resource.


Eng. Qutaiba Abu Qorah, the Director General of the National Petroleum Company, added, “BP is an ideal partner for the development of the Risha concession. BP has committed to investing a significant amount of capital on the exploration of gas resources in northeast Jordan. This project has important implications for Jordan’s national energy policy. If BP’s exploration program proves to be successful, the gas produced will help to reduce Jordan’s reliance on imported energy.”


Trowers & Hamlins worked in partnership with CRA International (CRA) on this project.  CRA are a worldwide leader in providing management, economic, and financial consulting services.  CRA and Trowers & Hamlins have previously on several other successful assignments in Jordan.


The two firms recently assisted the Jordanian government in negotiating a significant oil shale concession with Shell and are currently advising on a series of smaller oil shale concessions. They also worked together on the Jordan Gas Transmission Pipeline project and the related long-term purchase of Egyptian gas; the development of Jordan’s Energy Master Plan; restructuring of the Natural Resources Authority; and early stage development of Jordan’s wind energy projects.


Trowers & Hamlins was led by Martin Amison, Partner and Head of International.

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