The Australian Government has identified 29 offshore oil and gas blocks for bidding during its annual Offshore Petroleum Exploration Acreage Release.

The release comprises 29 areas located across eight basins in Commonwealth waters and includes 23 areas for work programme bidding and six areas for cash bidding.

The basins are located in the offshore areas of the Northern Territory, the Territory of Ashmore and Cartier Islands, Western Australia South Australia, Victoria and Tasmania.

"Australia selected the release areas to offer investment opportunities for the global petroleum exploration industry."

Australia selected the release areas to offer investment opportunities for the global petroleum exploration industry.

Located in a range of water depths, the areas vary in size and are backed by pre-competitive geological and geophysical data.

Work Program round 1 requires bids to be submitted by 29 October and the 12 offshore blocks offered comprise NT15-1, W15-2, AC15-1 and AC15-2, AC15-3, W15-5, W15-13, W15-16, W15-17, W15-18, V15-2, and V15-3.

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Under the cash bid round, six blocks have been offered, which are NT15-2, W15-1, W15-9, W15-10, W15-11, and W15-12.

The 11 offshore blocks available in the second round are W15-3, W15-4, W15-6, W15-7, W15-8, W15-14, S15-1, V15-1, T15-1, T15-2, and T15-3.

The Australian Government has also announced that it will offer the areas for rebidding that did not get sold in previous rounds.