State-owned Oil India (OIL) is to invest Rs5bn ($112.9m) in the first phase of exploration of oil and gas blocks located on India’s west coast.

OIL was selected as the provisional operator for the shallow water offshore block MB-OSN-2010 / 2 in the ninth round of auctions under the petroleum and natural gas ministry’s new exploration licensing policy.

The exploration of blocks will cost approximately $75m.

The company said it is looking to partner with overseas explorers for technology transfer to develop offshore assets.

OIL is the operator for two onshore blocks and will partner with ONGC to develop five deepwater blocks, according to mydigitalfc.com.

The company is also working in the Assam-Arakan Basin.