"I realise that some of my criticisms may be mistaken; but to refuse to criticize judgements for fear of being mistaken is to abandon criticism altogether... If any of my criticisms are found to be correct, the cause is served; and if any are found to be incorrect the very process of finding out my mistakes must lead to the discovery of the right reasons, or better reasons than I have been able to give, and the cause is served just as well."

-Mr. HM Seervai, Preface to the 1st ed., Constitutional Law of India.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Assignment/ Transfer of Participating Interests

We thought of doing a detailed post on the Cairn-vedanta deal and the decision of the government on the deal. But then there's a moot problem which deals with the same. The memorial deadline was 15 March 2011 I presume. In this post, we raise certain questions, quote certain provisions and cite certain judgements concerning the problem.

The latest production sharing contract of the Government of India comes with a very badly made cover page and can be obtained from here.

NELP IX PSC contains a provision (Article 28.7) that reads:
An assignment or transfer shall not be made where the Participating Interest to be retained by the proposed assignor or the percentage interest of assignee shall be less than ten per cent (10%) of the total Participating Interest of all the constituents of the Contractor, except where the Government, on the recommendations of the Management Committee may, in special circumstances, so permit.
What does 28.2 PSC say?

 Would decisions dealing with the rationale of RoFR provisions be helpful?

Is the requirement of government consent answered by the recent Reliance judgement?

What is this principle: what cannot be done directly cannot be done indirectly?

Is this judgement Apex Corporation v. Ceco Developments Ltd relevant?

Would checking out other PSCs/ Petroleum laws be relevant for establishing the standard regulatory role of the MoPNG in granting consent to assignments participating interests directly or indirectly.

Would checking out ICSID cases be relevant?

Check out this and this links.

Check out Joshnston's books and articles. might be relevant. He is an authority on Production Sharing Agreements.

Also checkout judgements especially decided by the courts in Alberta (Canada), and Texas. You might finsdsome relevant judgement or the other.

Check out the oilfield glossaries in the Schlumberger website and other sources.

Also check out the Notice Inviting Offers(NIO) and Bid Formatfor NELP VIII (the problem is about NELP IX. Nevertheless, its worth checking out).

Check out this guideline of of DGH. 

Also, know about the role of the DGH, the PNGRB, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas in regulating the petroleum industry. Further, read the entire PSC and know about the important aspects of the PSC.

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