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In 2005, the Maghreb Petroleum Research Group (MPRG), University College London, initiated a major research programme focused on the relatively poorly understood Neoproterozoic petroleum systems of the world. A series of research projects were undertaken to understand the generation and entrapment of hydrocarbons in this unique geological time interval, which is dominated by several episodes of global glaciations and post-glacial transgressions, coupled with basin development and rifting on a more local scale (Craig et al. 2009). The research started with a field-based study of the Neoproterozoic sequences in North Africa (Libya, Morocco and Mauritania) and northern India (Rajasthan and Jammu & Kashmir).

A series of international conferences, with field excursions/workshops, were run in parallel with the research programmes. The first of these was held at the Geological Society of London in November 2006 and the proceedings were published in 2009 in Geological Society London, Special Publication 326, entitled, ‘Global Neoproterozoic Petroleum Systems: the emerging potential in North Africa’ (Craig et al. 2009). The second international conference was held at the University of Jammu in 2008 with a focus on the Neoproterozoic petroleum systems of Asia, including India, Pakistan, Oman, China and Siberia (Bhat et al. 2008) (Fig. 1). This current volume contains some of the papers presented at the Jammu conference, in addition to new research on the geology and hydrocarbon potential of the Neoproterozoic–Cambrian basins of Asia. A third and concluding conference and an associated third Geological Society Special Publication will

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