OVL keen on buying stake in Russia’s Sakhalin block (Economic Times)

From: Economic Times

NEW DELHI: ONGC Videsh Ltd, the overseas arm of state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC), today once again expressed interest in taking at least 20 per cent stake in the Sakhalin-3 oil and gas fields and importing liquefied natural gas from Russia.

OVL has been since 2006 raising the issue of stake in the Far East Russian oil and gas fields but Moscow is yet to respond favourably.

OVL is keen on replicating its 20 per cent stake in Exxon Mobil-operated Sakhalin-1 oil and gas fields in the upcoming Sakhalin-3 project, official sources said.

OVL Managing Director D K Sarraf raised the issue when Oil Minister S Jaipal Reddy met his Russian counterpart Sergey Shmatko on sidelines of the World Petroleum Congress (WPC) in Doha, Qatar.

OVL also showed interest in acquiring stake in some oilfields in East Siberia and north Russia. Sarraf made a case for OVL joining hands with Russian firm Rosneft for exploring and developing the Vankor oilfield in East Siberia. Joint bidding for Trebs and Titov oilfields in the Timan Pechora region of North Russia was also discussed.

Besides, importing at least 2 million tonnes of LNG a year from Russia’s Sakhalin LNG project also figured during the discussions, sources said.

Petronet LNG Ltd, the nation’s largest liquefied natural gas importer, is raising its Dahej terminal capacity to 15 million tonnes and is keen on imports from Russia, which could be doubled to 4 million tonnes a year later.

An official statement said Petronet is in close talks with Russia’s Gazprom to jointly develop projects to produce LNG, gas pipelines, its transportation and marketing.

“Indian side suggested swapping LNG imports of Japan from Qatar with the LNG that could be available from Russian sources like Sakhalin,” the statement said adding Indian side also proposed participation of Petronet in the projects along with OVL.

Petronet informed that they would be soon finalising the agreement for sourcing LNG from Russia under the pact arrived at with Gazprom. The Heads of Agreement for supply of about 2.5 million tonnes of LNG were signed recently at Singapore.

The LNG is proposed to be sourced from Shtokman field. Petronet further showed interest in importing more LNG as the demand in India was growing rapidly, the statement added.

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