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11/22/04

Indian petroleum secretary heads for two-day visit to Iran

New Delhi, Nov 22, IRNA -- Indian Petroleum Secretary, Sushil Chand Tripathy, leading a high-level delegation, left New Delhi via Mumbai for Teheran on a two-day official trip Monday afternoon.

During the visit, Tripathy will discuss a number of issues, including a stake in an oil field in return for buying liquefied natural gas (LNG), the sources in Indian Petroleum and Gas Ministry told IRNA.

They said the Indian secretary will discuss all possible areas of energy cooperation with Iran.

Iran has offered to give Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC)'s overseas arm ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL) a 20 percent stake in its potential 300,000-barrel-a-day Yadevaran oil field, if India buys five million metric tons a year of Iranian liquefied natural gas.

It has offered LNG at a price of $2.57 per million British thermal units and India is seeking a lower price.

"The price of LNG from Iran has to be lower than what Rasgas is offering us," the petroleum secretary said.

Iran has offered a 40-percent stake to Indian Oil Corporation in a gas block in South Pars field.

"I would be discussing the deal with the Iranian authorities as the two companies have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on this but the deal is yet to get government approval," Tripathi said.

The two companies also propose to build a liquefaction facility in Iran for LNG. The investment decision will be taken once necessary agreements are made with the National Iranian Oil Company.

He will also discuss the modernization of Tabriz and Tehran refineries, the contract for which has been given to Indian Oil and Engineers India Limited (EIL).

... Payvand News - 11/22/04 ... --



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