19 Oct 2014

Minister dismisses oil prospect fears

10:14 am on 19 October 2014

The Minister of Energy and Resources is shrugging off fears low oil prices could discourage oil exploration in New Zealand.

Simon Bridges

Minister of Energy and Resources Simon Bridges Photo: RNZ

Simon Bridges says the investment cycle for petroleum exploration is decades long, so short-term price fluctuations are unlikely to make a difference.

Global oil prices have fallen 30 percent in four months to $83 a barrel, before recovering marginally.

In New Zealand, tenders recently closed for this year's offer of blocks of land and sea for exploration, and the results will be announced in December.

Mr Bridges said he doubted the tenders would be affected by short-term low oil prices.

The low prices are being blamed on moribund conditions in some large European economies.

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