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New Zealand will introduce a new law to remove ban on offshore oil exploration

The Government of New Zealand has announced it will introduce a new legislature before the end of 2024 to remove a ban on offshore oil exploration, which has been in place since 2018. The move is expected to attract investment to the country's oil and gas sector. The new bill would notably end the ban on exploration outside Taranaki, an energy-rich region on New Zealand's North Island.

In addition, the new law will propose changes to the way oil exploration applications are tendered and allocated, aligning the petroleum decommissioning regime with international best practice, and improving regulatory efficiency.

New Zealand produced 0.9 Mt of crude oil and 3.6 bcm of gas in 2022. The country’s proved reserves stood at 7 Mt for oil and 42 bcm for gas at the end of 2022.

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