Under the auction of the new licensing policy, bidders can look for all types of hydrocarbons, such as gas, oil, coal bed methane or shale
Two weeks ago, during the Petrotech 2014 meet at Noida, petroleum minister Veerappa Moily gave some details of the new auction planned, where as many as 86 blocks may come under the hammer! This time Moily stated that only those blocks that have all clearances will be offered for auction.
At present, he stated that 46 blocks have all the required clearances and, by 15th February, hopes to get all blocks cleared, so that bidders have no problem. Out the 46 blocks on hand now, 17 are on land; 15 are in shallow water while 14 blocks are in deep water. These blocks are spread over in Gujarat-Kutch, Kerala-Konkan, Cauvery, Krishna-Godavari and Deccan.
This new auction will be under Uniform Licensing Policy of Hydrocarbon acreages. They will include a new contractual system and fiscal model. The most important change is that, under this auction, bidders can look for all types of hydrocarbons—gas, oil, coal bed methane or shale. This change is in line with what the bidders have been demanding in the past.
The Rangarajan Panel has suggested that production-linked revenue sharing would be desirable, as against which the existing cost recovery model has to be compared and a suitable decision to be made by the government. Just to recapitulate, the current production sharing contract allows for cost recovery by exploration and production (E&P) before companies pay the government its share. This method has caused a lot of discussion and debate. Perhaps, the method suggested by the Rangarajan Panel would be more appropriate.
It may be noted that some of the blocks that will go under the hammer, includes those relinquished by Cairn India (which wants to bid again), and some of which were taken away from Reliance. The only exception made recently refers to the intention of the petroleum ministry which would seek CCEA (Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs) nod to allow Reliance and its partners (British Petroleum and Niko Resources) to conduct drill stem test, which they could not conduct within the stipulated time, and these cover earlier discoveries in KG-D6, such as D6, D30 and D 31, in spite of the objection by DGH (Director General of Hydrocarbons). This is a procedure to establish hydrocarbon discovery in acreage.
There are couple of other major changes that are likely when this auction takes place. Currently, the tax holiday is for seven years and the Ministry of Petroleum is contacting the Department of Revenue, if this could be increased to 10 years. The other change that may happen refers to the recommendation made by the Kelkar Committee that the Petroleum Ministry and DGH should restrict themselves to supervise the technical oversight of the contractors and leave the revenue aspect to the finance department. This will effectively curb the enormous powers exercised by DGH.
The DGH needs to build a strong technical team who would be able to guide and assist the contractors in order to focus on the object of increasing the production of hydrocarbon resources in the country and by undertaking exploration of the unexplored areas.
(AK Ramdas has worked with the Engineering Export Promotion Council of the ministry of commerce. He was also associated with various committees of the Council. His international career took him to places like Beirut, Kuwait and Dubai at a time when these were small trading outposts; and later to the US.)
If you have to pay $50 for a get-rich-quick scheme, who’s getting rich — you or the person you’re buying the scheme from?
How easy is it to get rich quick? Real easy, according to the Internet. Here are 50 ways we found to make plenty of money fast. And while some ideas may actually work (you really can get money from sperm donations), other ideas may not be so great. If you have to pay $50 for a get-rich-quick scheme, who’s getting rich — you or the person you’re buying the scheme from?
1. Buy gold.
2. No, wait. Sell gold.
3. Or maybe buy and sell gold.
4. Gold is out. Silver is where it’s at.
5. You could say five magic words to your teller and walk away with free silver.
6. Maybe both. Maybe buy gold and silver.
7. Maybe forget about gold and instead use the Bible’s Money Code.
8. Or just let God multiply your riches.
9. Use passive income to make a $4,520 a month in the next 30 days.
10. Maybe invest in something like the new, free, unspecified highway being built across America.
11. Or invest in Blue Fire Oil Drilling.
12. Invest in thorium.
13. Invest in coal and rake in a 240% return.
15. Invest in 3D printing.
16. Invest in this company that was hand-picked by Steve Jobs in 2005 but they are not going to tell you what it is until you give them your credit card information.
17. Invest in a “toll bridge” company that profits from all cell phone sales.
18. Invest in a copy of Ron Paul’s lost “Gold Bible.”
19. Invest in natural gas.
20. Invest in a small group of stocks that will go through the roof when the Pentagon unleashes Plan X.
22. Invest in uranium.
26. Use a backdoor to invest in the secret stock market U.S. Presidents use after they leave office.
27. Or just invest in something you don’t own: Become a paper landlord and collect rent checks without owning property.
28. Game the system. Use one weird trick to add $1,000 dollars to your Social Security check.
29. Bitcoins, baby. Bitcoins.
30. Harness the power of options.
31. Buy the Major Market Trend Indicator, which is powered by the Market Timer Algorithm that specifically searches for high-expectancy stock opportunities and other such jargon.
32. Maybe it’s time to harness Mother Nature and build your own miniature solar and wind power plant on your property to save big on electricity.
33. Understand the market’s opening range.
34. Sell adult toys online, a booming business.
35. Like this one company on Facebook and you’ll have financial freedom in 24 months.
36. Be a successful investor by following this rule: Don’t lose money.
37. Slap Warren Buffet’s name onto something for instant money.
39. Escape from the USA . . . without ever leaving home and somehow profit.
43. Use little-known corporate loopholes to collect an extra $2,000 every week.
44. Sperm donations.
45. Use the “Mainz” source of income to collect royalties.
47. Flip real estate for fun and profit.
49. Trust no one.
50. If all else fails? Collect underpants and profit.
US consumers with questions and concerns about their new health insurance under the Affordable Care Act sometimes find that complaints on social media get a faster response than calls or emails
Fed-up consumers, armed with questions and concerns about their new health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, are flocking to social media websites to seek answers and vent their frustrations.
For some, it’s because they can’t get through on the phone. For others, it’s a way of getting attention right away before trying phones or email.
This digital equivalent of line-jumping appears to be working.
A week ago, New Jersey writer Jen A. Miller sent a tweet asking:
A representative of Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield replied the following day and asked for more information.
“After an email exchange, HorizonBCBSNJ called and figured out that a ‘glitch’ delayed the mailing of the February bills,” Miller told me in an email. “I ended up paying over the phone.”
Miller said she turned to Twitter first because the last time she had an issue with Horizon — with her website login — “it took 40 minutes and two calls (including the part where the first person I talked to gave me the wrong number to call).”
“So when I had this issue, I tried Twitter first.”
Thomas Vincz, a spokesman for Horizon, wrote that the insurer has been deluged with new enrollees. More than half of its enrollment from HealthCare.gov, which is handling sign-ups for New Jersey, came between Dec. 15 and Dec. 24. “This crunch required intensive work in subsequent days and weeks to address many back end issues with enrollment verification and payment processing,” he wrote.
Horizon extended its hours, tripled its customer service staff and delayed payment deadlines, and things are returning to normal, Vincz said. “But we’re maintaining higher levels of customer service staffing to better assist our members during this busy time.”
Companies across the country are feeling the heat. This from Michigan:
And this from Illinois:
Among companies receiving the most scorn is Anthem Blue Cross. Earlier this week, we reported how the company had canceled the policies of some consumers in California, then switched them into new plans and deducted the premiums automatically from their bank accounts. Needless to say, consumers who chose other insurance options were none too pleased.
The man who responds to those messages, spokesman Darrel Ng (@AnthemPR_CA), told me in an email that the insurer’s customers are interacting with companies in ways beyond the traditional phone call. “In response to this new demand, we created our customer service twitter account @AskAnthem several years ago to assist members. As consumers themselves started proactively contacting our other twitter accounts, we started directing these inquiries to customer service for assistance.”
The insurance company Aetna has a dedicated Twitter account, @AetnaHelp, to assist with customer service queries — and it’s been busy lately.
Spokesman Matt Wiggin said the beginning of the year is a busy time for the insurer and is particularly so this year because of the Affordable Care Act and its changing deadlines.
“There have been some instances where call volumes have been heavy and if people have not been able to get through or been able to get the information we need, they’ve either reached out to us through social media or other means available,” he said. “It’s just another way for folks to engage with us.”
Sometimes, Aetna’s tweets are even proactive. When a customer of Anthem Blue Cross tweeted dissatisfaction and said her business was up for grabs, Aetna’s customer service team chimed in.
The California HealthCare Foundation has been tracking Twitter sentiment around the Affordable Care Act. In a report released last week, the foundation found that in general, there has been much less discussion about the law recently than there was in October when HealthCare.gov, the federal marketplace, didn’t work. In December, the conversation shifted somewhat to the affordability of options.
Catherine Teare, a senior program officer for health reform and public programs at the foundation, said she doesn’t have data about consumers interacting with their plans on Twitter, but added that an uptick makes sense.
“I don’t think these tweets give us necessarily a way to grade either the performance of the insurance companies or of the exchanges, but we certainly didn’t see the complaints about insurance companies back in November because people weren’t that far through the process,” Teare said.
Even state insurance exchanges themselves are getting into the act, responding to Twitter queries lobbed their way. This from California:
Anne Gonzales, a spokeswoman for Covered California, said the exchange has a social media team that monitors its Twitter feed, Facebook pages and Instagram account around the clock.
“We actively respond to consumers using social media to answer their questions and to help them through the process,” Gonzales wrote. “We get as many as 500 Facebook posts a day, and the social media team answers up to 50 questions a day, so it's becoming a valuable tool for people in need.”
Gonzales said the exchange’s Facebook and Twitter followers help each other out and compare notes. “People root each other on to get covered, and congratulate others on successful enrollment,” she wrote. “We recognize that social media is the resource of choice among younger, more tech-savvy consumers, and we are using it as a tool to get consumer feedback and to reach out to those experiencing difficulty in enrolling or getting information.”