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National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) has extended to 1 September from 11 July the bid deadline for 16 new oil blocks issued for tender last year. The blocks are the first to be offered under linked exploration and production buyback contracts (MEED 23:4:04). About 30 companies bought the field data and a reasonable number are expected to offer proposals for three-four of the blocks whose prospectivity is much higher than the others. NIOC has only asked for a minimum commitment in 11 of the blocks. Proposals for the remaining four can be made as study contracts only.