April 05, 2008

India, Turkmenistan ink energy pact

India and Turkmenistan Saturday inked a landmark memorandum of understanding on cooperation in the oil and gas sector that is expected to go a long way in addressing India’s long term energy security needs.

Minister of State for External Affair E. Ahamed and Turkmen Deputy Prime Minister for Oil and Gas Tachbardy Tagier signed the agreement in the presence of Vice President Mohammad Hamid Ansari and Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berbimohammedov.

Speaking earlier at the delegation level talks between the two countries, Ansari pointed to Turkmenistan’s geo-strategic location and said it had an important role to play in meeting India’s energy needs.

“Turkmenistan is geo-strategically located and with its vast hydrocarbon resources, it has an important role to play in the world’s energy security. India, with its vast requirement of energy is Turkmenistan’s natural partner,” the vice president noted.

Both Ansari and Berbimohammedov pointed to the close and historical ties between the two countries and said they would provide the impetus to move ahead in diverse fields.

Appreciating the fact that India was one of the first countries to recognize Turkmenistan when it emerged as an independent nation in 2001, Berbimohammedov said: “India’s progress in IT is commendable. We seek your expertise in this field.”

Referring to the growing ties, the president noted that some 15 Indian companies currently had a presence in Turkmenistan, trade had grown 10 times in the last decade, and that 10 flights operated a week between the two countries. “We must find new ways to enhance these ties,” Berbimohammedov added.

(Source: thaindian.com)

ONGC Videsh to invest $450 million in Venezuelan joint venture news

05 April 2008

Mumbai: ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL), the overseas arm of Oil and Natural Gas Corporation of India (ONGC), will invest around $450 million over the next three years in oil and gas exploration in Venezuela, petroleum minister Murli Deora said.

OVL is planning a joint venture with Venezuela's national oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA) to operate the San Cristobal oil block, Deora said.

OVL has acquired a 40 per cent stake in the San Cristabel oil block, located in the Orinoco belt, in Venezuela, with estimated reserves of around 250-million tonnes, he said.

OVL and a subsidiary of PDVSA will form a joint venture to operate the San Cristobal area and production is expected to start in about three years' time.

Deora is leaving for Venezuela tomorrow to sign an agreement to this effect.Deora also said Indian officials would meet their counterparts from Pakistan and Iran later this month to resolve certain issues raised by Pakistan on the proposed $7 billion India-Pakistan-Iran gas pipeline.

The government is planning to spend $300 billion over the next 5-7 years on exploration and production of oil, petroleum secretary MS Srinivasan said.

India and Turkmenistan, meanwhile, signed a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in the field of oil and natural gas.NNThe MoU was signed by minister of state for external affairs E Ahamed and Turkmenistan's deputy premier and minister for oil and gas, T Tagiev.

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