We present the results of 2–D non linear hydrodynamic simulations performed to examine the driving of orbital eccentricity through disc-companion tidal interaction. We examine the eccentricity evolution for companion masses, mp
, in the range 1 > mp
>; 30 MJupiter
. The disc model we employ is similar to a minimum mass solar nebula model.
We find that there is a transition in behaviour, characterised by a rapid growth in eccentricity, for companion masses mp
≳ 20 MJupiter
. Companions with masses below this limit show essentially no growth in eccentricity, for the disc model parameters that we examine. Our results suggest that if giant planets form from protostellar discs with properties similar to those studied in this paper, then the observed orbital eccentricities of the extrasolar planets are not a consequence of tidal interaction with their protostellar discs during formation.