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Investing in offshore petroleum exploration
The annual offshore petroleum exploration acreage release is part of the government’s strategy to promote offshore oil and gas exploration. Each year, the government invites companies to bid for the opportunity to invest in oil and gas exploration in Australian Commonwealth waters.
Why invest in offshore petroleum exploration
- Australia is an attractive investment location with abundant energy resources for exploration and development.
- Australia’s seabed territory covers more than 14.6 million km² — one of the largest marine jurisdictions in the world.
- Many of Australia’s sedimentary basins remain largely underexplored and have the potential to host significant volumes of hydrocarbons.
- Only around 20% of Australia’s offshore basins are covered by petroleum titles.
Australia is a low risk environment to invest and do business, our competitive position is based on:
- a strong and resilient economy
- supportive government policies
- mature trade links with key markets
- the world’s major oil and gas companies participating at all stages of the supply chain
Australia offers oil and gas explorers:
- an annual release of petroleum acreage for bidding
- open access to precompetitive geological and geophysical data and analysis from Geoscience Australia
- close proximity to growing Asia-Pacific markets
- environmental approvals conducted by a single regulatory authority
- transparent and practical regulatory requirements
- access to world-leading research and development
- innovative oil and gas technologies
- an internationally competitive profit-based tax system
2021 Offshore petroleum exploration acreage release
The 2021 acreage release is now open. Bidding on these areas closes on Thursday 3 March 2022.
We consulted on areas for inclusion as part of the acreage release process. View feedback from stakeholders on our Consultation hub or learn more about the nomination process for future releases.
Subscribe to the Australian Petroleum News for exploration acreage investment opportunities.
2020 Offshore petroleum exploration acreage release
Bidding for the 2020 acreage release is being assessed.
Past acreage releases
See past acreage releases on the Australian Government Web Archive:
- 2019 Offshore petroleum exploration acreage release
- 2018 Offshore petroleum exploration acreage release
- 2017 Offshore petroleum exploration acreage release
- 2016 Offshore petroleum exploration acreage release
- 2015 Offshore petroleum exploration acreage release
- 2014 to 2006 Offshore petroleum exploration acreage release
- Foreign investors may need to seek approval from the Australian Treasurer. See foreign investment for mining requirements on the Foreign Investment Review Board website.
- See recent data on reasons for investing in Australia in the 2021 Why Australia Benchmark Report on the Austrade website
- Read the Guide to investing in Australia and Foreign Investment Framework on the Austrade website
- Read about energy and resources investment opportunities in Australia on the Austrade website
- Read about taxation and royalties on mineral and petroleum projects
- See forecasts for the value, volume and price of Australia’s major resources and energy commodity exports in the Resources and Energy Quarterly
- We support industry-led Growth Centres in the Mining Equipment, Technology, and Services and Oil, Gas and Energy Resources sectors
Last updated: 12 July 2021
Content ID: 46909