The commercial exploitation of the natural resources in the continental plateau could only be possible as late as 2011-12, energy analyst Catalin Dimofte declared for Moreover, for natural gas resources, this period could actually increase.

For the exploitation of natural resources, authorities need to take up several stages:

  • studies of the area
  • splitting the area by the National Mineral Reserves Agency
  • companies are offered exploitation permits for a maximum period of three years, without the right to expand the period
  • the Agency establishes the list of the areas that are offered through public tenders. The initial period of exploitation could be up to 30 years, with the possibility to expand it with another 15 years
  • the winner of the tender gets to sign a contract with the Agency and only then he is allowed to exploit the area

Dimofte thus declared that he would be very surprised if oil exploitations will start earlier than three years from now. He declared that after the public tenders, it will probably take up another 3 years until oil could be drained from the areas. Plus, for the natural gas, it could even take longer.

The analyst declared that is very hard to estimate the total amount of resources present in the area and estimations vary from 1 to 10 million tons of oil and 10 to 100 billion cubic meters of natural gas because there are no official numbers.